Michael Carson, MD



Dr.Carson is a Board Certified Internist who obtained his A.B. from Lafayette College, went to medical school at Temple University, and completed his Internal Medicine residency at Brown University. Dr. Carson continued at Brown for a fellowship in Obstetric and Consultative Medicine. Currently he holds a dual appointment as a Clinical Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine and OB/GYN at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. He directs the Obstetric Medicine Service at Jersey Shore UMC in Neptune, NJ. In addition to being a reviewer for the Annals of Internal Medicine, Women's Health and Obstetric Medicine, he is published and a leader in educating internists about caring for medical disorders during pregnancy.  Dr. Carson will be lecturing at our April review course.

ABOG & AOBOG 2016 WRITTEN Exam Candidates

Are you still reeling from the CREOG in-service training exam? Are you regretting that you didn’t take it seriously? Well, how’s this for a reality check? ABOG no longer reports your score; it’s only pass or fail. Thus, the ONLY predictor of your passing your written boards is your CREOG score!

We strongly advise taking a BOARD review course, not just a review course. Our April 13-17 course is an exam focused review. In just five days, we’ll cover 90% of the exam topics. Our faculty base their lectures on ACOG clinical guidelines. Most importantly, every lecture concludes with written exam questions, which are compiled into a handy dandy packet for later testing and reinforcement.

All of us are a bit rusty with written exams. Our education specialists, Martin and Jane Jolley, specialize in standardized written exams and have created a program just for those taking their written board exam. If you want to assure that you nail the exam, or if you have traditionally struggled with written exams, we recommend you sign up for their Test Taking Workshop at our April course.

Looking for written questions? Our Written Questions Manuals consist of 1000+ questions that are organized by the major exam subjects: OB, GYN, Office, REI, Oncology & FPM. Even sweeter, they are further organized by subtopics, so you can beeline to questions to immediately check your subject review. No more wasted hours of sifting through sources with random questions!

Speaking of efficiency, our Written Questions Navigators are just like your GPS that navigates you from Point A to Point B. In this case, Point A is the resource and Point B is the specific topic. This will save hours of valuable study time.

Test Taking Technique:
You pretty much have to know everything about OB/GYN. However, for you “lists folk,” both of the boards give a breakdown of the categories.
You ABOG folk go to the 2016 Bulletin via abog.org for a list of topics covered on the exam. They break it down by OB, GYN, Office Practice/Preventative/Primary Care, and Cross Content areas. Although the examples in parentheses are not meant to be all-inclusive, you would be a fool to not know them.      
You AOBOG folk go to aobog.org and click on “For a list of study topics”.  Yours are broken down into GYN, GYN ONC, REI, OB, MFM. Notice you don’t have Cross Content topics.
But hey, did we mention we cover 90% of exam topics in just five days at our course?

 

ABOG 2016 ORAL Exam Candidates

You can finally officially apply on-line for the 2016 oral exam on February 1st at www.abog.org. Your application and the application fee of $840 are both due by March 15th. Don’t risk overlooking this menial, but necessary, administrative task. If you delay, you will incur stiff late fees.

Surely you already have your case list software, but if you do not, stop everything and order it now from the ABOG website.  

Remember that case list collections started JULY 1, 2015 or seven months ago!  So now you’re over the hump and only FIVE MONTHS LEFT to complete your collection of cases.

By this time, you must be in a routine for entering your cases. ABC recommends that you keep a stash of case list forms in your surgery and L&D locker. Right after you dictate your operative or delivery notes, complete the case list form. Once a week, enter this data into your case list software. Don’t fret about details of how to enter the data. For now, just use your clinical sense. You’ll change your mind at least a half dozen times before it’s all said and done.

You should now have three binders for each of the three sections - OB, GYN, and Office. For each GYN patient, compile their case list sheet, H&P, operative notes, pathology report and discharge summary. For all OB patients, keep a file of the prenatal forms, delivery notes, discharge summaries and postpartum notes. For the office patients, file the case list sheet, appropriate copies of the office visit(s) and supporting labs, imaging studies, etc. By now, you should have at least half of the 40 office categories collected. Your goal is to have ¾ of the cases collected by March.

If you have been using the ABOG case list software, chances are you can now appreciate why your predecessors grumbled that they would have never used it. Don’t fret – it was helpful to at least get you familiar with the process. However, if you want to take full control over the optimal construction, we recommend you customize your own software.

Rest assured, this is really pretty easy. Come to our one day Case List Construction Workshop offered April 12, the day before the review course.  We’ll show you how to raise your case list head and shoulders above the other candidates. For those who are OCD, order your copy of the Pass Your Oral Ob/Gyn Board Exam by Dr. Das for a complete step-by-step guide.

If the weather outside is frightful, then our Oral Exam Webinar is delightful. Drs. Diane Evans and Marc Jean-Gilles will spend 1-2 hours weekly on each topic and show you exactly how to prepare for an oral exam. It starts February 1st and covers core topics in just three months. Sign up for one, two or all three sessions. They are strategically divided into OB, GYN, and Oncology/Urogynecology. Don’t worry, all sessions are archived.  This webinar series will catapult your studying and leave no stones unturned for preparing for additional topics. Additionally, for each session, you are awarded one mock oral exam, so three if you sign up for the whole series.

If you’re really anal, come to our April 13-17 BOARD Review Course. The advantage of starting in the spring is that you have a good idea of the topics on your case list. You don’t have to do any heavy duty studying until August, as your only priority from May to August 1st is to get that case list done and design your strategy. However, once August 1st hits, eee gads! There is precious little time to study if your exam is the first month in November. Thus, coming to a review course in the spring greatly facilitates exploding out of the starting blocks.

Case List Construction Tip:
A patient can only be counted ONCE on your case list, but how do you enter her if she had more than one surgery or hospitalization in the same year of collections? ABOG does not give you any guidance. We recommend that you list her once, but separate the two cases by a full blank space or line. For example, let’s say you did an endometrial ablation for heavy menstrual bleeding in July. However, 9 months later, she is still plagued with AUB and you perform a hysterectomy

Pt. #  

PREOPERATIVE DX

TREATMENT

PATHOLOGY

1

Heavy menstrual bleeding

refractory to OCPs, NSAIDs

Hysteroscopic D&C

Global endometrial ablation

Endometrium – proliferative

 

 

Heavy menstrual bleeding, failed Endometrial ablation

VH, salpingectomy

Uterus (200gms)

Adenomyosis

Cervix - benign

AOBOG Oral Exam Candidates

The April exam is closed. Applications for the October, 2016 exam, along with the $3275 fee, are available online March 1st.  Make sure you go online March 1 because the number of candidates is now limited and spots fill up quickly.

If you want to pull it all together for your April exam, or officially launch your preparation for your fall exam, it’s time to register for a review course.  Our April 13-17 BOARD review course is perfect for a streamlined exam focused review. Did you know our syllabus even highlights the core topics? Each core topic is just an umbrella for many other spin off topics.

Not only will we cover 95% of your test topics, we also have the faculty skilled in giving you Mock Oral Exams. Since 2011, 99% of our board coarse attendees passed their AOBOG oral exam. All agreed our signature Structured Cases CDs closely simulate the exam content and conduct and were instrumental in their passing.

Test Taking Technique:
This is an oral exam. You can study more, but if you can’t persuasively articulate, all that work is for naught. Our Osteopathic Oral Board Exam Webinar, designed by Dr. Diane Evans DO, FACOOG goes through EACH of the core topics AND invites each participant to interact. It starts February 1st and is strategically timed just for you April examinees. Each monthly session is strategically grouped into OB, then GYN, then Oncology/Urogynecology. If you sign up for all 3 sessions, you get 3 mock oral exams which you can use during the month of April, just before your exam. Oh hey - did we mention that since its debut in 2011, 99% of webinar attendees have passed their exam?

Chief Residents Planning A Subspecialty Fellowship

Subspecialty fellows are permitted to select 20 patients from their Chief resident year for their off specialty case list. In other words, GYN Oncologists, REI and Urogynecologists will need an OB list and MFMs need a GYN list. Therefore, make sure to hold onto that residency log!

Refer to the ABOG Bulletin on how those 20 patients are selected. To be on the safe side, we recommend you collect at least 30, so you can strategically select the final 20 later. For those patients, keep a file of the following: for the GYN patients, collect the H&Ps, operative notes, pathology reports, and discharge summaries. For the OB patients, keep a file of the prenatal forms, delivery notes, discharge summaries, and postpartum notes.  Don’t worry about the office patients at all, as you may compile this only during your fellowship.

A word of caution – right now you are at your peak for general OB/GYN knowledge. Believe it or not, two years from now, your knowledge base will regress to that of an intern. Yes, it’s true . . . if you don’t use it, you lose it. So those really cool, esoteric, bizarre, once-in-a career cases now will be a nightmare to defend later. Your greatest allies are your junior residents. If they can’t easily defend that case, discard it and “go fish” for another.

Test Taking Technique:
For many candidates, Oncology is a love/hate relationship. Commonly, many don’t even have any oncology on their GYN case list, since most generalists refer the patient to the gyn oncologist upon the diagnosis, or even suspicion, of cancer. Nonetheless, you will be held accountable for oncology on your oral exam.
As a resident, oncology is practically second nature for you.  Make sure to choose some oncology cases for your case list if you will be using your chief log for your GYN case list. Just go with the bread and butter cancers, such as ovarian, uterine and cervical cancers. You’ll be glad you did, as it will be easier to retain or relearn these topics two or more years from now.

 
Subspecialty Fellows Planning for their 2016 ABOG General Oral Board Exam

You knew it was too good to be true. Just like heart burn, those non-specialty subjects that you gleefully suppressed have come back to haunt you. You can only take the general oral boards once during your fellowship, so strategize carefully to see which year will best set you up for success.

If you neglected to collect cases in your off specialty from your chief year, you must get back to your residency institution to gather those cases. GYN Oncologists, REI and Urogynecologists will need an OB list and MFMs will need a GYN list. If you currently have to take call for these off services, you can use those cases. Yes, it’s true . . . if you don’t use it, you lose it. So we suggest you take the exam right away or start collecting cases your first year of your fellowship.

If you are retrospectively collecting cases, go with your comfort zone. Dang, how could you have forgotten so much in such a short time? Unfortunately it’s true . . . if you don’t use it, you lose it. Go with the bread-and-butter cases.  Remember, this is your general boards. We recommend you chose those cases that reflect high-yield topics. Our Test Topics Manual and the Pass Your Oral Ob/Gyn Board Exam by Dr. Das offer excellent step-by-step guidance.

Test Taking Technique:
For many candidates, Oncology is a love/hate relationship. Commonly, many don’t even have any oncology on their GYN case list, since most generalists refer the patient to the gyn oncologist upon the diagnosis, or even suspicion, of cancer. Nonetheless, you will be held accountable for oncology on your oral exam.
If you are using cases from your chief residency log for your GYN case list, make sure to choose some oncology cases. Just go with the bread and butter cancers, such as ovarian, uterine and cervical cancers. You’ll be glad you did, as it will be easier to retain or relearn these topics if you have a specific patient prototype.

ABOG Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Part II

Time to pay to play. Your renewal fee of $305 for Part II or Annual Board Certification is due with your application, which became available January 7th.  You must apply every year, let me repeat that. . . EVERY year, and access to the MOC assignments will not be allowed until your application and fee are received. The list of journal articles for the first quarter came out mid-January. Make a New Year’s resolution to finish the first quarter before you file your taxes in April.

For those of you in MOC Year 6, you must pass a written exam by December 15th, 2016. RELAX, it’s only 100 questions and you answer two books of fifty questions. You get to choose your “selectives” for each exam.

Selective Exam A (50 questions)

  1. Obstetrics and Gynecology and Office Practice & Women’s Health
  2. Obstetrics only
  3. Gynecology only
  4. Office Practice and Women’s Health only

 Selective Exam B (50 questions)

  1. Obstetrics and Gynecology and Office Practice & Women’s Health
  2. Obstetrics only
  3. Gynecology only
  4. Office Practice and Women’s Health only

 Welcome and congratulations to those who just passed their oral exam. Thought you could finally rest? Well think again!! New diplomats must enter and start the MOC process by January, 2016.

Test Taking Tip:
For those of you in MOC Year 6, you can take the exam anytime starting January 1st. For you generalists who have truly read (not skimmed) the MOC articles, we recommend you take the exam right away. Heck, if you pass, you get to prop your feet up and chill for the rest of the year. Well sort of . . . you still have to complete the 2016 articles.
If you didn’t pass, there is no financial penalty to retake the exam. Actually, you can retake the exam up to four times if necessary. However, now you need to study. Our Annual MOC Manuals summarize each of the articles, so these save you oodles of time.
Speaking of time savings, come to our April 13-17 review course for a comprehensive review. We will cover high yield Compendium articles and associated written questions. We strongly encourage you to then take your exam within a week after the course. Yes, it’s that good and no, you don’t need to study more. With this strategy, we’re batting 100% pass rate for all course attendees!
Additionally, if you’re feeling a bit rusty or if you had to repeat your primary written exam, our education specialists, Martin and Jane Jolley, specialize in standardized written exams and have created a program just for those taking their written board exam. Sign up for their Test Taking Workshop offered at our April course.

AOBOG Recertification Written Exam, Osteopathic Continuous Certification in Obstetrics & Gynecology (OCC)

This exam is usually a piece of cake . . . that is, if you are a generalist. Although probably overkill, it’s fun and refreshing to attend our review course. This is all you need.

The breakdown of the OCC exam is as follows:      

General Obstetrics                              25%
Maternal Fetal Medicine                    10%
Gynecology (office and surgery)       40%
Reproductive Endocrinology             10%
Gynecologic Oncology                       10%
Miscellaneous                                      5%

Test Taking Tips:
Reminder that you need to sign up for your Practice Performance Assessments (PPA) as part of your OCC process. You need to complete five in your six year cycle. Start the New Year off right and knock out one this year.

You can do it, we can help.

 

 

 

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