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Core Knowledge & Elements of Osteopathic Principles in the Discipline of Pediatrics

Content Outline and Assessment Objectives

The Pediatrics examination is designed for end-of-course or end-of-clinical rotation/clerkship assessment for students enrolled at a college of osteopathic medicine (COM). Individual COMs may also administer the examination at other times in accord with their curriculum goals and mission. This examination emphasizes core knowledge and elements of osteopathic principles and practice in the discipline of Pediatrics that are essential for the predoctoral osteopathic medical student. The exam blueprint below contains the Pediatrics topics covered in two dimensions: Dimension 1 – Patient Presentation and Dimension 2 – Physician Tasks.

Dimension 1: Patient Presentation

CNS – Behavior/Psychiatry10-16%
Musculoskeletal/OPP (Osteopathic Principles & Practice)6-10%
Growth & Development10-16%
Skin 6-10%

Dimension 2: Physician Tasks

Diagnostic Technologies15–25%
Health Promotion/Disease Prevention/Health Care Delivery10–20%
History & Physical35–50%
Scientific Mechanisms of Disease 5–10%

General Learner-Centered Objectives

Based on general learner-centered objectives, as outlined in the Pediatrics Examination Blueprint, the examinee will be required to demonstrate the ability to apply:

  1. Foundational content knowledge to situations and patient presentations encountered in clinical settings and important to Pediatrics.
  2. Foundational content knowledge and clinical problem-solving ability related to particular physician tasks critical to Pediatrics.
  3. Knowledge and clinical problem-solving as related to the Fundamental Osteopathic Medical Competency Domains, including osteopathic principles and practice and OMT, osteopathic medical knowledge, interpersonal and communication skills, practice-based learning and improvement, systems-based practice, professionalism and patient care.
  4. Osteopathic principles and practice in commonly encountered patient care scenarios.

Selected Specific Learner-Centered Objectives for Pediatrics

For Pediatrics, the examinee will be required to demonstrate the ability to diagnose and manage selected patient presentations and clinical situations involving, but not limited to:

  1. Cardiology/Respiratory: congenital disorders, neonatal respiratory distress, vascular diseases, and infectious diseases and other inflammatory conditions affecting the respiratory and cardiovascular systems
  2. CNS-Behavior/Psychiatry: common behavioral problems, including sleep and colic in infants; tantrums, feeding issues, and potty training in toddlers; attention deficit disorder, encopresis, and oppositional defiant disorder in school-aged children; eating disorders, substance use/abuse, and conduct disorders in adolescents; pervasive developmental disorders, mood and anxiety disorders and headache
  3. Endocrine/Metabolism: nutrition, diabetes, abnormal growth, thyroid disorders and menstrual disorders
  4. Gastrointestinal: nutrition, obesity, failure to thrive, digestive difficulties, abdominal pain and infectious diseases affecting the gastrointestinal system
  5. HEENT: allergies, dental health, congenital anomalies, and ophthalmic and otorhinolaryngologic disorders
  6. Hematology/Lymphatics: common anemias, lymphadenopathy, immune system disorders, bleeding disorders, malignancies and toxicity
  7. Integument: rashes, lesions and neonatal skin conditions
  8. Musculoskeletal/OPP: structural disorders, sports medicine, trauma, somatic dysfunction, viscerosomatic relationships, infectious diseases affecting the musculoskeletal system and rheumatology
  9. Normal Growth and Development: developmental milestones (e.g., Denver Developmental examination), puberty and the sequence of physical changes in development (e.g., Tanner scale), health promotion, variants of normal growth in healthy children, screening and disease and injury prevention, and anticipatory guidance and immunizations for newborns, infants, toddlers, school-aged children and adolescents
  10. Renal/Urinary: congenital abnormalities, urinary tract infections, laboratory abnormalities and nephropathy and neoplasms affecting the renal system

Selected Student and Faculty Learning Resources for Pediatrics

In addition to the aforementioned objectives, examples of supplementary resources used by the NBOME to inform the development of the Pediatrics exam are listed below:

  • American Pediatrics Association/Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics (APA/COMSEP) – General Pediatric Clerkship Curriculum
    – Common Pediatric Illness Table
    – Diagnosis List
  • American Osteopathic Association (AOA) – Pediatrics
  • American Osteopathic Association (AOA) and American College of Osteopathic Pediatricians (ACOP) – Basic Standards for Residency Training in Pediatrics

Practice Questions

The Pediatrics Practice Questions are primarily designed to assist the candidate in navigating through the examination, and it is provided to facilitate the actual testing experience. It is not designed to give the candidate a score or provide information about how a candidate might actually perform on the examination.

Launch Pediatrics Practice Questions

Additional Resources

Title Author Edition Year
Nelson's Textbook of Pediatrics Kliegman & Geme 21st 2019
The Harriet Lane Handbook of Pediatrics Johns Hopkins Hospital 22nd 2020
An Osteopathic Approach to Diagnosis and Treatment DiGiovanna, Amen, & Burns 4th 2020
An Osteopathic Approach to Children Carreiro 2nd 2009
Foundations of Osteopathic Medicine Seffinger 4th 2019
COMAT Clinical Subjects
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