Medicine is one of the most sort out and rewarding career for those interested in Science and dealing with sick people. Over the years, the field of medical studies have undergone various stages of development, it has become so vast that specializations within are increasing day by day. There is great scope for medicine as a professional career. A doctor's profession involves a lot of hard work and at the same time, it gives the satisfaction of curing patients at times even saving lives. It is a very demanding profession. To be in this profession is more a responsibility than a privilege. It is more of what you can give the community than what you can get from it. The increasing complicated lifestyles giving birth to a variety of ailments have made it impossible for General Physicians with an MBBS degree to handle all ailments. It is here that specialization in a particular branch of medicine becomes a necessity. The major Specializations include General Medicine, General Surgery, Paediatrics, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Dermatology, Ophthalmology, Orthopedics, ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat), Psychiatry, Anesthesiology etc. There is also Super Specializations which require a further 3-5 years of study in areas such as Plastic Surgery, Neurosurgery, Cardio-thoracic surgery, Conito-urinary surgery, Paediatric Surgery, Gastroenterology, Endocrinology and Clinical Haematology. The demand for medical professionals are tremendously increasing with the unfortunate upsurge of diseases and ailments day by day. At the same time super specialty hospitals are mushrooming both within the country and abroad offering employment opportunities. These along with liberalization of economy could bring better opportunities for these professionals in terms of remuneration, research and working facilities.Other than Allopathy, medicine also covers different systems like Homeopathy, Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani etc.
The basic or degree level qualification for a medical profession is MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine And Bachelor Of Surgery) which is of 5 1/2 years duration (including 1 year internship). Selection for MBBS is through an All India Entrance Examination. The qualification required for entrance is 10+2 or equivalent with Science subjects. In the case of private medical colleges entrance examinations are conducted by the institutes individually. In addition to MBBS, candidate should complete House Surgency or internship for one year. The course content includes anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, forensic medicine, general medicine, surgery, ophthalmology, ENT (ear, nose and throat), gynaecology and obstetrics, paediatrics, orthopaedics and preventive and social medicine. After MBBS, candidates can go for post graduate level studies (MD or MS) through another entrance. At the post graduate level, there is specialisation in Medicine and Surgery. Post Graduate Programmes (MD or MS) is usually of 3 years duration. The major Specialisations include General Medicine, General Surgery, Paediatrics, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Dermatology, Ophthalmology, Orthopedics, ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat), Psychiatry, Anesthesiology etc. Those with Post Graduation (MD or MS or M.Sc in Medicine) can further opt for super-specialisation. i.e. they can go for Ph.D in any specialised area of medicine. MD or MS holders can complete the Doctoral Programme (Ph.D) in 2 years and M.Sc Medicine holders in 3 years. For practicing as a physician or surgeon, one needs to have completed the MBBS course from a recognised medical college and must possess a license from the State Medical Council to practice.
Should have good memory and recollection ability, service mentality, stamina, patience, power of concentration, emotional stability, logical and analytical mind, willingness to learn throughout their career, ability to take timely decisions, self -motivation etc. A doctor is also expected to possess a strong sense of responsibility as the patient's life depends entirely on him.
Job Prospects & Career Options
Career options / Specializations
Some of the common areas of specialization in Medicine and Surgery are:
General Practitioner or Physician: He diagnosis and treats the every day and sundry ailments of the human body. MBBS holders practice as physicians.
General Surgeon : Is one who specialises in surgery for all organs of the body. He can further specialise in specific areas. Duties involve examining the patient to determine the extent and nature of injury, treatment through operation and giving post operative care. Surgery is of various types Orthopaedic, Plastic, Neuro etc.
Anaesthetist or Anaesthesiologists: Administers anesthetics to a patient undergoing surgical operation according to the nature of operation. It is he who makes the surgical procedure as painless as possible. His duties involve examining the patient to determine his capacity to withstand shock of operation and anesthesia. He/she has huge responsibility and has to be present throughout the operation.
Psychiatrist: Diagnoses and treats mental disorders. Psychiatry has two major branches: The first is psychotherapy, the application of psychological techniques to the treatment of mental illnesses. This branch uses non-drug therapies and will not use physical techniques such as drugs or surgery. The second branch is psychiatry, where medical therapies are used. After diagnosing physical and behavioural symptoms, drugs and other means may be used for treatment.
Neurologist: Diagnosis and treats diseases related to brain and nervous system. They also specialise in Neuro-surgery.
Pediatrician: Treats newborn babies and children.
Ophthalmologist or Eye Specialist: Treats diseases and disorders of eyes.
Pathologist: Investigate the cause of various diseases and the possibilities for their prevention. His duties involve conducting chemical, microscopic and bacteriological test in labs and examining blood, tissues, urine etc. to find out the cause for disease.
Cardiologist: Also called as heart specialist. Treats diseases related to heart and circulatory system.
Gynaecologist-Obstetrician: Diagnosis and treats diseases and disorders of human female reproduction system. They care for pregnant women from conception through delivery.
Dermatologist: One who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of skin problems.
Orthopaedist: Deals with diseases connected to skeletal system. Orthopedics is that branch of medicine that deals with the correction of deformities and prevention of disorders in joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, all bones and bony tissue.
Gastroenterologist: Treats diseases related to liver, pancreas, stomach, intestine, bowels and gall bladder
Radiologist: Diagnosis diseases and disorders by studying X-ray pictures of affected parts and gives treatment such as therapeutic radiation to affected parts of the body.
ENT specialist: Treats disorders of ear, nose and throat
Tuberculosis Specialist: Treats ailments due to infection by tubercular disease
Venereologist: Treats venereal or sexual diseases.
Bacteriologist: Also called Microbiologist. Conducts research and laboratory experiments on occurrence, growth, development, control and utilization of bacteria and other micro-organisms.
Physiologist: Studies normal functioning of different organs and tissues of human body and investigates effects of physical environments such as variations in altitude, speed, temperature etc on its vital functions.
Nutritionist: Gives instructions regarding food values and utilization of foods in human body to keep it healthy and control diseases. He prescribes diet for various diseases.
Chiropodist : Also called pedicurist, treats foot diseases and abnormalities. He treats corns, blisters etc using surgical instruments.
They can find employment in
• Government or private hospitals
• Nursing homes/clinics/health departments
• Medical services of the army, navy and air force, under the Ministry of Defense
• Charitable institutions
• Medical colleges and training institutes as teachers
• Research institutes and medical colleges as researchers
• The industrial sector
• Private practice/ self employment
The earnings of a doctor through private practice depends on his/her popularity. The doctors who are working in government hospitalrs are well paid. The pay varies for those working with private hospitals. Dentists beginning their careers in government hospitals can expect their salaries to be around Rs 7,000, and those who hold post graduate degrees can begin at salaries of Rs. 8,000. A dentist setting up a private practice can earn, on an average, Rs 6,000