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Besides Neurosurgery, which specialties have both lay and professional prestige?

Discussion in 'Allopathic' started by flatearth22, May 30, 2012.

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  1. flatearth22

    flatearth22

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    From what I've seen with medical specialties, it is usually hard to have both lay and professional prestige.

    For example, EM Physicians have lots of lay prestige because of dramas like ER and documentaries like Untold Stories of the ER. But amongst medical professionals, EM docs are basically seen as glorified triage nurses.

    On the flip side, Radiation Oncologists have lots of professional prestige because of the highly intellectual and tech-savvy nature of their work and emphasis on cutting edge research. But they are a virtual unknown amongst the lay people. One Radonc resident I know says that when he tells people that he's a Radiation Oncologist they think he's a radiation tech or something.

    The only specialty that I see which has both lay and professional prestige/respect is Neurosurgery. Are there any others?
  2. tankgunner

    tankgunner

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  3. KinasePro

    KinasePro Das it mane

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    CT surg (though less-so professionally, these days), Plastics, Cardiology
  4. BrightandClear

    BrightandClear

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    Seriously?!?
  5. KinasePro

    KinasePro Das it mane

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    Yeah, it's pretty ridiculous but true. At our hospitals, I think ortho and EM get shat on by physicians more than any other specialties. Professional respect/prestige is a strange thing in medicine.
  6. CassieBagley

    CassieBagley

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    If you look at the specialties with a lot of "professional' prestige, most of them are those which hard long, tough residencies: neurosurgery, plastics, maxillofacial surg, CT, ortho. These are respected by fellow docs b/c of the difficulty in getting the job and the high stakes/immediacy of the job itself.

    The specialties with a lot of "laymen" prestige are those that are most represented in media: EM and all surgeries.
  7. Spinietzschon

    Spinietzschon

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    I think that most people who go on to specialize in senate have a lot of prestige. And I don't think (correct me if wrong) that any president held a medical degree - yes it says Harrison who died shortly after taking office withdrew from medicine before completing his degree. So you'd also be a first. But, I don't know if they'd know whether to call you 'Mr President' (or Mrs/Ms) or 'Dr President' and also, sound it out if you don't believe me - 'Senator ____' almost always sounds more solid than 'President ___'.
  8. VisionaryTics

    VisionaryTics Señor Member

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    [​IMG]
  9. link2swim06

    link2swim06 PGY-1

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    Dear OP,

    FYI, you dont more SDN prestige by changing your status to "medical student" when you haven't started medical school yet.

    That is all.
  10. haloth

    haloth

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    OP: You barely made it into med school. Don't worry about such things yet.
  11. dr zaius

    dr zaius Lowly Intern

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  12. FunnyCurrent

    FunnyCurrent Ripe Prince of Westwood

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    :laugh:

    are you sure you're a medical student?

    edit: nvm just saw the class of 2016.
  13. FunnyCurrent

    FunnyCurrent Ripe Prince of Westwood

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    for -- ev --- er
  14. Geekchick921

    Geekchick921 Holy schnikes, I'm a 4th year! Moderator Emeritus

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    Aww, some of you guys haven't seen this guy's posts on pre-allo, have you? Wee!
  15. calvnandhobbs68

    calvnandhobbs68 I KNOW NOTHING

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    "I find it requires too much faith for me to believe that explanation given all the fossils we have found without any fossilized evidence of the direct, step-by-step evolutionary progression from simple to complex organisms or from one species to another species."

    Because, you know, it requires less faith to believe that everything on earth appeared when God clapped his hands. I just thought this was a hilarious quote.
  16. dr zaius

    dr zaius Lowly Intern

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    It's mind boggling that he's apparently an incredibly smart and gifted surgeon, but can't see the problem with that statement.


    There is no prestige to the lay person in being a doctor anymore. It's all about sticking it to The Man AKA insurance, pharmaceutical companies, etc. The prestige is in chiropractics, homeopathy, naturopathy, and any other "career" that "thinks outside the box" and "isn't afraid to stand up to The Man" and "is really in tune with the mind-body connection and energy flows." It's fun watching us devolve back into mysticism.
  17. CaptainSSO

    CaptainSSO

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    What exactly do you think prestige is? Do you think people are going to run up to you and say, "Oh, flatearth, I wish I could be you. I respect you."

    No, more likely, (given that you changed your status to "medical student" before you even started med school and you made this thread, you're probably a douche), people will go up to you and say "Flatearth, you're a douchebag, bro."
  18. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 chick magnet

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    I disagree, ortho are always disparaged for not having medical knowledge and consulting medicine for mild hypertension.
  19. jcu

    jcu should have been dr. who

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    But ... mild HTN is serious business :(
  20. BrightandClear

    BrightandClear

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    You misunderstood my comment. It was his ridiculous generalization regarding the views of "medical professionals" that I was remarking on.
  21. todds

    todds Member

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    Well, you'll get comments that you shouldn't anything for the perceived "prestige" of something because itll wear off quick. But i'll bite nonetheless. You'll get professional prestige from people in medicine if they think that they CANNOT do your job.

    For example, a lot of people think they can work in the ER, because SOME ER docs indeed function like triage nurses and just consult for everything, and don't do anything like what their training would have you believe. Specialists think they don't need Radiologists, because almost all specialists read their own images. Think Pulm/CC, ENT, Ortho, NSG/Neuro, GS/GI, etc..even some ER, IM/ID and PCPs dont trust the Radiology reads and think they do a better job themselves (I dont agree with this, just stating what people in medicine tend to believe).

    Interestingly, Pathologists at my institution get tons of respect from docs, but almost none from the lay person. No one doubts a pathologists read of something (except maybe hematology)

    Lay person/Professional respect:

    - Cardiac Electrophysiology is one field you can't start to mess with. Everyone gets at least a little freaked out by arrhythmias because they can be so deadly. Cardiology has lots of prestige in the lay person as well (they CT surgeons/Cardiologist are the same thing)

    - Trauma Surgery - true badasses of the ER, takeover the ER doc once they come through. Tons of lay person prestige

    - Nephrology - Not tons of lay person respect, but tons of respect from docs. Everyone knows these are some of the smartest in the hospital, you don't mess with the kidney.

    - Oncology - Call yourself a cancer doc in public and people look up to you. Chemo is serious business so get decent professional respect as well.


    Little lay person and little professional respect:

    - Anesthesia: Some pts don't even know they are doctors, some doctors think they just read the newspaper all day and don't do anything even though they are some of the smartest people ive been around
    - Radiology: as above
    - PM&R: lay person thinks you're a PT, docs don't even know what you really do
    - Psychiatry: obvious
  22. Wheatley

    Wheatley

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    Family medicine.
  23. mjl1717

    mjl1717 Senior Member

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    Thats funny! :laugh:
  24. mjl1717

    mjl1717 Senior Member

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    Well, at least the family medicine doc could be totally well rounded and eclectic. .:welcome::prof:
  25. TheRadiologist

    TheRadiologist

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    Radiology!

    jk...

    Someone once asked me if you needed a bachelors degree to be radiologist. She was shocked to find out that radiologists are doctors.
  26. dr zaius

    dr zaius Lowly Intern

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    Can you play World of Warcraft in the reading room?
  27. duckie99

    duckie99

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    I haven't actually heard a lot of people talk bad about FM. Lots of docs scoff at the idea of doing primary care but they all understand someone has to do it. Also I personally think well trained FM docs are badly needed (i.e. not have so many docs who can barely speak English from other countries; these are not not caribbean students). Also talking to FM guys they say they are better at primary care than IM/peds because they have all the same training plus know how to do lots of procedures that IM/peds don't do. They also can do gyn which IM doesn't do. Furthermore they say IM is quicker to refer out.

    However I do not think primary care has lots of lay person prestige as a whole but you'll have plenty of patients who'll love you.


    In general though if you want prestige from lay people do anything surgery or EM.

    However, I do not see much respect for surgery from medicine docs and vise versa. No one respects EM. Medicine docs think surgeons don't know any medicine and are only trained in how to do procedures (partly true) and can't manage patient beyond that. Surgeons think medicine docs don't know surgery (even though they know when a patient needs surgery, something a surgeon cannot do from the beginning like they can) and they also have much larger egos in general.
  28. RestoreSight

    RestoreSight

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    This is a funny thread. I agree with the above, mostly. Only a few specialties combine lay respect with professional respect.

    Cardiology - especially invasive. Everyone knows what a heart attack or stroke is, and everyone has respect for people that treat the heart.

    Trauma surgeons - Definitely. Agree with above. They are like ER docs, but on another level.

    Neurosurgeons - operating on the brain? Fugetaboutit

    Surgeons in general... basically true. Quarterbacks of medicine.

    Ophthalmology - I'm biased given I matched in ophtho, but every time I'm on a plane or train and someone asks me what kind of doctor I am, they seem impressed.

    Plastic Surgeons - hate to admit it, but true... HIGHLY competitive, public perception is maybe a bit more mixed

    Pediatrics - yup. treat kids, lots of respect both lay and professional

    Choose a specialty based on what interests you. First big decision is procedural or not. Then surgery vs. procedural medicine... then go from there. Good luck
  29. KinasePro

    KinasePro Das it mane

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    I notice this, too. I once heard a heme-onc doc say "I like a surgeon who doesn't ask questions and does what he's told," which is probably more condescending than what you'd typically hear on the wards, but I think it reflects the conflict pretty well. Of course, from the surgeon's perspective, internists don't do anything except sip coffee and pontificate about lab values.

    Still, the stereotype seems to be that the internists are the "smartest" docs in the hospital.
  30. GuyWhoDoesStuff

    GuyWhoDoesStuff I got the skills to pay the bills

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    You sure she wasn't confusing you with a radiology tech or something? I can't begin to count the number of times some non-medical person has confused the two.

    "So then the radiologist took two x-rays of my hand and now I'm waiting to hear from the doctor to see if it's broken . . . "
  31. badasshairday

    badasshairday Account on Hold

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    Yup. I told this old lady on the plane that I'm going into radiology. She was confused when I told her it will take me 14 years of education beyond high school to become a practicing radiologist. She said her niece became a radiologist in 18 months at the local technical college. :laugh:
  32. JackShephard MD

    JackShephard MD

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    For - ev - er -ev - er?


    Good post.

    Plastics have good lay prestige though.
  33. se20001984

    se20001984

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    I'm honestly gunno stop comming to SDN
  34. docnotsopc

    docnotsopc

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    #1 - OP you arent even medical school yet, you are not a "medical student" you are a pre-med with an acceptance. I feel like I need to remind you on top of other posts

    #2 - You havent started med school yet and this is your concern? You are EXACTLY the type of person that should NOT be accepted into medical school. All you care about is prestige? Pathetic. You are going to be the med student on rotations who walks around acting like he is a resident. You are going to be the resident walking around talking down to nurses because they aren't as prestigious and intelligent as you. You are going to be the guy who drives around in a $100,000 car riding on peoples rear bumper because they are only going 10 mph over the speed limit and you are in a "rush".

    You are doing society a disservice by starting med school
  35. gooze

    gooze Removed

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    i mean no one should ever pick a field based on what lay people think...the truth is that most lay people do not know the true extent of a lot of fields. perfect example is radiology. yes, some pple think that radiologists are the ones taking the xray, CT scans, etc. they clearly don't understand hwo much you need to know to be a radiologist and how radiologists are some of the smartest pple in the hospital and how many services rely on them before doing anything. similarly, very very few lay pple know what interventional radiologists are but they are some of the most respected physicians in the hospitals.

    along the same note, take surgical fields like ENT/Urology...tell a lay person that you're going into either of these fields and they'll think that all you do is pick out ear wax all day/do DREs all day...lay people don't understand the extent of these fields nor do they even realize that these guys are surgeons and do some big time surgeries. and they for sure don't even know that ENT/Urology are two of the most competitive fields to get into and they require you to be the top of your class in med school, etc...whereas a field like cardiac surgery garners a lot of lay person prestige when in reality most physicians of this generation realize that becoming a cardiac surgeon is really not that competitive. general surgery is not too hard to get into from med school and cardiac surgery fellowship is even easier as about 50% go unfilled every year. but you ask a lay person about who he/she thinks did better in med school..someone in ENT/urology/radiology or someone in cardiac surgery? guess which one they'll pick.

    so honestly the point is, you really can not base your decision on what you'll be doing in your life on what lay pple think. who cares??? you're the one that has to live with the choice, not them. and plus, just being a doctor is enough prestige to lay people...most don't even know what residencies are. good luck.
  36. duckie99

    duckie99

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    most people don't even know what "medical school" is let alone residency lol. I've told multiple people I'm in medical school and they think that I'm training to be a medical assistant.

    agree with your point about not picking a field based on lay person prestige. They are completely clueless about pretty much everything.
  37. mordounhas

    mordounhas

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    Frankly, I wouldn't pick a field based on professional prestige either. There isn't a field of medicine I haven't heard badmouthed by other fields. Certainly some fields tend to get more of it than others (IMO EM, Rads, and Ortho), but I've heard plenty of negative talk about others.

    I'm going into Ortho and have heard more times than I can count the inane "smartest kids in medical school become the dumbest doctors" joke and countless variants. My personal favorite was at a joint Neurosurgery-Ortho weekly spine conference where one of the Neurosurgery attendings quipped that "you can either save lives or save bone." Had I been overly concerned with the perception of Ortho from other fields, I wouldn't be going into a field I believe to be a good fit for me.
  38. Ok2Panic

    Ok2Panic MS4 Gold Donor

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    :thumbup: At my school our IDs have "MEDICAL STUDENT" written across the bottom in huge lettering. I wish I could count the number of times I've ran out to get a cup of coffee in between classes and someone said to me "Oh, going to be a nurse? That's nice"

    Prestige neither pays your bills nor wipes your bum, so it might be time to start worrying about something that actually matters, OP.
  39. Socrates25

    Socrates25

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    Yes, but thats because they are lazy, not because they are stupid.
  40. Socrates25

    Socrates25

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    If they dont accept this guy, how are all the third tier trash med schools like RVU that are opening up over the next 5 years going to rob him of his tuition money?

    The scoundrels have to go SOMEWHERE, dont they?
  41. Slack3r

    Slack3r Sicker than your average

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    Third tier med school eh? Sounds like someone else is pretty concerned with prestige as well...
  42. TallScrubs

    TallScrubs Dr. Mantis Toboggan

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    Seriously, dude, shut up. Get off your high horse. Some people want money, some want prestige--if it's not you, then why give a rat's ass?

    What's that rule everyone throws around here, Burnett's Law?
  43. dr zaius

    dr zaius Lowly Intern

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    Godwin's Law. OP = Hitler.
  44. KinasePro

    KinasePro Das it mane

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    I've never heard anyone accuse an orthopod of being lazy. The jokes are aimed pretty explicitly at their intellect. I've even heard nurses take jabs at the ortho service.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm still very interested in the specialty and don't really care about peer prestige. Just calling it like it is.
  45. jhamaican

    jhamaican

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    get over yourself. people enter medicine for many reasons.
  46. namethatsmell

    namethatsmell

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    We have a winner.

    At this point the only field I haven't heard genuinely disparaged is urology...it's not something I'm interested in, just saying.

    You gotta take a step back and ask yourself what you value and want out of your career and life...is "prestige" having your wife and kids spend the day in the hospital with you because you doing q4 trauma call for the rest of your life? Is "prestige" gonna protect you when the patient whose triple A you repair but then goes on to become a paraplegic sues you?

    Pick the field you like most, work hard and help some people, respect from those who matter will follow.

    BTW I'm surprised nobody suggested going rural. I've done a few rotations out in the middle of nowhere...I've never seen docs (of all specialties) so cordial with each other AND basically worshiped by the staff/patients.
  47. GuyWhoDoesStuff

    GuyWhoDoesStuff I got the skills to pay the bills

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    I've been told on at least 4 or 5 occasions that I'm "wasting my brain" by going into derm. You just learn to shake it off and laugh.
  48. GuyWhoDoesStuff

    GuyWhoDoesStuff I got the skills to pay the bills

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    Burnett's Law = "you will make a terrible doctor because [insert reference to something they posted here on SDN."
  49. dr zaius

    dr zaius Lowly Intern

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    I know, but Hitler is better. I'm also strung out on UWorld, so I probably don't make any sense at the moment.
  50. belle54321

    belle54321

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    Every time I complained my first specialty (obgyn), I would be told by a layperson, "why don't you go into dermatology?" As if you can just walk into the hospital and declare yourself ready to become a dermatologist. Or, I am reminded by this guy whose sister is a dermatologist that she has the best life (implying that I am a fool going into obygn-sad but kind of true!)

    Least prestige among laypeople and physicians: psychiatry-most people think I am going to become a psychologist. I don't really care though.

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