Any Doctors in here?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by justaregularjoe, Dec 20, 2009.

  1. justaregularjoe macrumors 6502

    Nov 28, 2008
    Inspired by user 'tsic219', I thought I might ask some questions to those here who are the gods among us (lol) 2 things: I live in Canada, and plan to goto school here, and I want to become a surgeon.

    First, what is it like? Seriously. Is it more pencil pushing and explaining than cutting? Do the surgeries make it worthwhile at the end of the day?

    Second, is the career overall worth it? Do you like it? is the pain caused by the patients you lose dulled by the ones you save?

    Finally, any recommendations for schools? Especially Canadian schools? Any other assorted tips at getting into/surviving the career?

    Thanks for anything you can tell me.
  2. ethical macrumors 68000

    Dec 22, 2007
    I'm not a doctor, but I'm a medical student in the UK.

    All I can say is get some work experience!! Over here it's crucial to get work experience in order to get in, especially as it's so fiercely competitive. It proves to the school you've really looked into what's involved and you're committed to the life-long career. It'll also give you a personal idea of what it's like, rather than deciding based on someone else's opinion.

    As for how to get in, I don't know what it's like in Canada but here you have to really show you've got the necessary attributes to be a doctor. Compassion, empathy, dedication, personal drive, communication skills etc etc. And, as I mentioned before, you need to prove that you really know what's involved and that you're committed.

    If I can help any further then just send me a message!
  3. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Oct 22, 2007
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    My father was on the medical school track. He had the marks and he got into a good school for his pre-med studies. Went to his first autopsy, and became a sociologist. Get some practical experience early on, eh?!
  4. stonyc macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2005
    I don't have any advice, but I have a joke and some personal thoughts.

    Heard this joke from a buddy of mine (he's a cardiologist) a little bit ago...

    How do you keep a dollar away from a radiologist? Hide it under a patient.
    How do you keep a dollar away from a surgeon? Hide it in a book.
    How do you keep a dollar away from a cardiologist? You can't.

    I'm in graduate school right now (bioinformatics), and thinking about what to do afterwards... medical school is on the list, as is continuing on with a PhD, or just getting a job.

    Medical school appeals to me because then I could couple my bioinformatics background with clinical research training... one thing that's stopping me is that I hate "people". :rolleyes: Haha! My wife is in family medicine and bless her for what she does day in and day out, but if I were to go into medicine I'd want to have as minimal patient contact as possible. Primary care just isn't for me. Sounds bad doesn't it? Radiology and pathology are high on my list... Oncology would be the most directly compatible with my bioinformatics background, but the patient contact and constantly being the bearer of bad news... I don't think I could take it.

    The PhD is probably the most realistic, given my expectations... but then I'd have to collaborate with a physician if I wanted to do anything more geared to the clinical/translational side of research.

    I guess I do have one piece of advice... having seen my wife through her medical education and several very close friends as well, it's a LONG process. Four years medical school, three years residency and tack on three to four more if you want to do any sort of specialty. Be absolutely certain that this is what you want to do with your life, because there's no turning back. You'll have 150-200k in loans following you for most of your career, the hours are long and be ready to become a money-making machine for the insurance companies (at least in the States).

    Medicine, like any profession, is still a business... if my wife were posting, she would probably say that's what she least expected out of the whole ordeal. Often times she is handicapped to best help her patients because employers want doctors to see X amount of patients in a day, and she can't afford to take the time to listen as much as patients deserve. She'll often have to ignore secondary and tertiary problems in order to focus on one primary problem before she has to send someone on their way.

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