ISSN 2380-2995 (Online)
ISSN 2380-2987 (Print)


Ronald W. Lindsey, MD
Zbigniew Gugala, MD, PhD

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Closing the Gap in Musculoskeletal Education for Medical Students Entering Primary Care Careers

Vani Sabesan, MD[1]; James D. Whaley, MD[2]; Bruce D. Browner, MD, MHCM[3]

[1] Orthopaedic Surgery, Cleveland Clinic Florida; Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA
[2] Orthopaedic Surgery, Beaumont Health; Royal Oak, MI, USA
[3] Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Duke University; Durham, NC, USA

Corresponding Author:Bruce D. Browner, MD, MHCM
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
Duke University
1603 Allen Jarrett Dr
Mebane, NC 27302, USA

DOI: 10.18600/toj.020207


The high prevalence of musculoskeletal disorders mandates that physicians in training receive thorough education on the subject. However, clinical observation supported with research data indicate that physicians in training are not being well prepared to treat musculoskeletal disorders. Medical school graduates often exhibit a lack of cognitive mastery in musculoskeletal medicine when evaluated using a validated examination. Furthermore, surveys and subjective evaluations have reported that residents but also practicing physicians lack confidence in patient care related to musculoskeletal medicine. In this review, we outline the current status of musculoskeletal education of medical students and residents, and present the recently developed initiatives to enhance it.

Level of Evidence: V; Descriptive review/Expert opinions.

Keywords: Medical education; Musculoskletal knowledge; Medical student didicatics.