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According to the ABFAS, Part I of the Certification in Reconstructive Rearfoot/Ankle Surgery Examination process leads to Board Qualified in Reconstructive Rearfoot/Ankle Surgery. The Part I examination involves diagnostic and perioperative care of the podiatric surgical patient encompassing the foot and ankle.
The Part I Exam is made up of two sections: didactic (i.e., multiple-choice) questions and a Computer-based Patient Simulation (CBPS) assessment, which evaluates the candidate's clinical reasoning skills. Both sections may include some interpretation of image-based materials.
The examination involves diagnostic, intraoperative, and perioperative care of the podiatric surgical patient pertaining to RRA procedures.
The exam consists of a maximum of 125 multiple-choice questions and a maximum of eight CBPS cases. Part I is administered in one session lasting no more than four hours.
According to the ABFAS, the Part II examinations serve to evaluate the candidate's knowledge and skills in obtaining and interpreting clinical information as well as the ability to reason logically and to arrive at a diagnosis or treatment plan for a specific patient presentation.
The Part II Exam is made up of two sections: an analysis of cases selected by ABFAS for Case Review and the CBPS assessment.
Case Review involves the assessment of all aspects of surgical cases performed by candidates, including surgical decision-making, preoperative clinical assessment, preoperative radiographic assessment, technical skills assessment, and outcomes analysis.
The CBPS assessment will consist of patient scenarios presented by the computer, and the candidate must interactively enter selections from lists and moves through the question to completion.
Questions involve diagnostic, intraoperative, and perioperative care of the podiatric surgical patient pertaining to reconstructive rearfoot and ankle procedures.
For more details refer to the ABFAS Information and Requirements For Board Certification Part I and Part II.
We suggest using the McGlamry textbook as a resource for the ABFAS in tandem with the BoardVitals question bank for the RRA exam. We are not associated with McGlamry review, but the textbook is referenced in some of the explanations offered in our question banks.
Note that being Board Certified in Foot Surgery is a prerequisite to taking the reconstructive rearfoot/ankle surgery.
The ABFAS RRA exams are fairly difficult and cover very specific topics given the limited scope of the exam. While Part 1 of the exam covers diagnostics and operative care, Part 2 is focused strictly on interpreting clinical information, making diagnostics and planning treatments. Many of the concepts on the exam are topics that you have encountered in your practice, but be prepared for a few of the more esoteric cases. The questions are all multiple choice questions (MCQ), but are case-structured.
You may also access computer-based simulation practice cases on the ABFAS website. You’ll have to be logged in to the site, but there is a hyperlink in the lower right hand corner. We strongly suggest using these practice sets in addition to the BoardVitals RRA Surgery question banks.