An Essential Exam Revision Guide to Diploma in Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery


This revision guide will provide a framework around which to base your revision for the DOHNS part 2 exam. It covers all pertinent topics in sufficient but succinct detail and will help you enhance your core background knowledge required to pass the exam. In addition to essential theory, the book also covers other relevant aspects such as oral and written communication skills, and instrument identification.

List of topics:

    • The DOHNS Syllabus in relation to Part 2

SECTION ONE: Common Topics for the DOHNS Part 2

    • The Ear
    • The Nose
    • The Mouth and Oropharynx
    • The Larynx
    • Other common DOHNS Head and Neck pathology
    • The Thyroid
    • Cranial Nerves
    • Hearing and Balance
    • Imaging

SECTION TWO: Communication Skills for the DOHNS Part 2

    • Consent
    • Information giving
    • Operation note
    • Discharge summary
    • History taking
    • Breaking bad news

SECTION THREE: Appendicies

  • Procedures / Examination
  • Instrument gallery
  • Acknowledgements

Diploma in Otolaryngology Head an Surgery Part 2 Revision Guid

Mr. Benjamin Stew, MBBCh, MRCS, DOHNS

Authors and Contributors:
Mr. Tobias Moorhouse, MBBCh, BSc, MRCS, DOHNS
Dr. Rhian Rhys, MBBS, FRCR
Ms. Lucy Satherley, MBBCh, BSc, MRCS
Ms. Ellie De Rosa

Mr. Stuart Quine, BMedSc, BM BS, M Phil, FRCS (ORL-HNS)

The Diploma of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck surgery (DOHNS) is a qualification sought by most trainees with an interest in Ear, Nose and Throat surgery. The part 2 OSCE examination takes place at the Royal College of Surgeons and follows on from the part 1 written examination.

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The original revision guide was written to accompany the Doctors Academy DOHNS course started in 2009. The course was developed with an aim to provide details of the exam set-up, improve background knowledge and give candidates the opportunity to hone the skills required to pass the exam. This guide has been progressively assembled over the years as the course has gained popularity. The intention was, and is, to provide a framework around which to base your revision for the part 2 exam. Although we have attempted to cover most of the syllabus for the DOHNS part 2 exam, due to the wide range of conditions and disorders covered by this speciality, it needs to be acknowledged that
covering every topic in depth is beyond the scope of this guide. It is hence suggested that this guide is used as a complementary resource in conjunction with time honoured ENT textbooks .

It is our hope that this revision guide proves to be an invaluable tool for passing the DOHNS OSCE examination. Good luck! With very best wishes,

Mr Benjamin Stew

The DOHNS Part B exam not only tests the clinical application of knowledge but also places emphasis on ‘soft skills’ such as information gathering and information giving. The candidate sitting the exam can also be expected to be tested on relevant radiology and common
instruments used in managing patients presenting to the speciality. A successful candidate has to demonstrate a logical and precise approach to the OSCE stations in the examination. The overall structure of the exam, however, is such that individual components (domains) of the
candidate’s ability to practice the speciality effectively are tested in addition to the global approach to patient management.

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I encourage you to enjoy and benefit from the hard and thoroughly structured frameworks offered by these authors. They have to be congratulated on producing this excellent aide memoir for the process of tackling the knowledge levels by providing a succinct description of all important topics pertinent to the exam. The extremely impressive and vivid illustrations, coupled with pertinent radiological images and a detailed instrument gallery, complements the text very nicely. The uninitiated will learn, the widely-read should pass and the broadly but
selectively experienced reader will derive a perspective from the subject matter.

One of the challenges faced by junior surgeons is the ability to focus and integrate the information gathered to reach a diagnosis while at the same time developing the thought process to plan the management. The history taking and communication sections in this book are laid out nicely. With time and practice, surgeons develop their own internal patterns for recognising and diagnosing conditions. This expertise can only be acquired by personally interviewing as many patients as possible whilst being a trainee surgeon and thereafter on completion of training.

This book is highly relevant for trainees preparing for the DOHNS Part B exam conducted by the UK Royal Colleges and will provide a framework around which to base the revision. In addition, this book should prepare the candidate for exams of a similar nature in other parts of the world.

It must be borne in mind, however, that the DOHNS examination is not an end in itself but rather a beginning. As the trainee progresses through higher surgical training, the importance of clinical examination does not diminish and this book will act as a vade mecum well beyond the period of preparation for the exam. It is clear, practical and beautifully produced.

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I wish it and its authors well.
Best wishes,
Mr Stuart Quine, BMedSc, BM BS, M Phil, FRCS (ORL-HNS)
Program Director for ENT – All Wales Training Programme
Consultant ENT & Head and Neck Surgeon
University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff
Honorary Lecturer, Cardiff University


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