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Ryan Spalding is a surgical resident at Seattle Grace Mercy West Hospital.


Skills Lab[]

The day he was re-assigned to Cristina Yang, they were forced to attending a mandatory skills lab. For the lab, Owen stabbed four live pigs and told the doctors to save their lives. ("Life During Wartime")

Intern Cabal[]

Frustrated that the residents weren't teaching them, the interns began to practice IVs on each other. When Lexie Grey found out that some unclaimed bodies were being preserved for medical research, she took a few of them for the interns to practice things on. However, the residents also took the cadavers, so they continued to practice on themselves. ("Rise Up")

The interns continued to practice and were joined by Sadie Harris. Cristina became suspicious when Lexie knew the parallel pulley stitch, something she hadn't taught her, which led to her discovering what they were doing. She told them to shut it down. ("These Ties That Bind")

The interns then gave Steve an epidural to practice. ("In the Midnight Hour")

Sadie's Appendectomy[]

The interns wanted to remove Steve's appendix while he was on the epidural, but he refused, so Sadie volunteered as long as she could remove one of theirs when they were done. They numbed her and Lexie used a book to guide her as she prepared to operate. When she hesitated, Sadie took the scalpel and made the first cut herself. When Lexie got to the appendix, it was inflamed, meaning this wasn't a routine procedure. Graciella said they should call a resident and then decided to leave when they wouldn't do it. Cristina then figured out that they hadn't shut it down like she told them to. Lexie came to Meredith because Sadie became unstable. Meredith and Cristina took over the surgery. They sent for Bailey and managed to save Sadie's life. The interns were then called in to present her case, admitting that they made choices that compromised her care. They were all then placed on probation until further notice. ("In the Midnight Hour")

Solo Surgery[]

The day that the winner of the solo surgery was to be announced, Steve, Graciella, Ryan, and Lexie waited outside the room and made several false announcements the residents eagerly waited to hear. ("All By Myself")

Mark's Penis[]

While waiting outside an on-call room trying to get some sleep, Dani, Steve, and Ryan heard a loud, painful moan when Mark broke his penis. Later, while they watched his surgery, they gossiped about who might have broken it. Sadie eventually confessed, despite it actually being Lexie. ("Stairway to Heaven")

Warren Kramer[]

When Warren Kramer came into the ER with an object lodged in his rectum, Steve, Pierce, and Ryan all laughed over his predicament. ("Beat Your Heart Out")

Intern Contest[]

Wanting to remind the interns, who were still on probation, why they loved medicine, Izzie Stevens put together a medical contest for them, which involved diagnosing patients based on symptoms presented to them and draping patients for specific surgeries. Ryan, Lexie, and Steve reached the finish line at the same time, but Lexie gave the correct diagnosis, making her the winner. ("Before and After")

Patient X[]

After finding out she had cancer, Izzie took her scans and lab results and showed them to the interns, challenging them to diagnosis a patient she called "Patient X." ("An Honest Mistake")

They continued working on Patient X and presented a few ideas to Izzie. After more tests, they decided that Patient X was fine, before Izzie told them she was not fine. At the end of the day, they presented their final diagnosis: metastatic melanoma, with mets to the skin, liver, and brain. Her prognosis was very poor. They asked Izzie what their prize was, but she said the prize is that they didn't screw it up. ("I Will Follow You Into the Dark")

Face Transplant[]

When David Young came into the hospital for his face transplant, the interns were prepared for his surgery and were told they'd likely never see another one again. ("Stand By Me")

Hospital Merger[]

Ryan survived the first round of cutbacks, but was worried when the Mercy West residents started at the newly-merged hospital. ("Invasion")


He participated in a documentary someone was making about doctors at the hospital. ("Seattle Grace: On Call")


Dr. Ryan Spalding was originally a surgical intern of Cristina Yang at Seattle Grace Hospital.

Ryan was one of the surgical interns operating on Sadie. He was left on his own in OR, while the others went to get help. He was put on probation with the other interns, after Sadie nearly died in the operation.

Dr. Spalding became a second year surgical resident and survived the first round of lay-offs when Seattle Grace Hospital merged with Mercy West Medical Center.

Cristina Yang's Interns[]

Notes and Trivia[]

  • He went to Baylor, where he says they practiced putting IVs into each other.[1]
  • He likes to sing karaoke.[2]
  • He did drill team in college.[3]



Episode Stills[]