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May 1988

Dabblers in Head and Neck Oncology

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1988;114(5):581. doi:10.1001/archotol.1988.01860170111038

To the Editor.—This letter is in response to the recent editorial by John M. Loré, MD, in the November 1987 issue of the Archives.1

There is great need for our organizations to take a hard look at what is being done by their residents when they enter the "real" world. We do not need superspecialization as Dr Loré suggests.

When I go to the Academy meeting and hear long discourses on exotic head and neck disease, I wonder if I came to the right meeting. Most of the otolaryngologists in the country who are outside academic centers probably do what I do. They see people with acutely painful conditions. They treat upper respiratory disease. They evaluate various kinds of hearing-related diseases. They are physicians first and surgeons second. Excluding patients referred by a few pediatricians, most do not come to the otolaryngologist thinking they need an operation.