Feb 8, 2021
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  1. Resident [Any Field]
Hello to everyone!

So I graduated recently and got a position in internal medicine in Germany. So far, so good.
But I am just utterly confused about what to do with my life and career. I hope a discussion here could help.

Throughout med school I have been fascinated with many specialties, starting from ob/gyn, internal medicine (mostly endocrinology and nephrology), anesthesiology, abdominal surgery, genetics, radiology. I even did two projects for a science medicine in genetics. Each time we rotated I was in love with a different specialty but then moving on, I was interested in something else, you get the point. However, I was also trying to see the cons to each one of them, so I could choose wisely, or at least I hoped I could.
So I decided to go for internal medicine as I didn't know what to choose, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. Also in med school we did mostly internal medicine and surgery rotations. But now having the position I am asking myself is this really what I want to do with my life longterm. Long shifts, night shifts, weekends working and so much paperwork. So you end up utterly exhausted.

As a person I am outgoing, friendly, I like having time for my interests and I would like to have time for my family and kids one day. I also love traveling, did two internships abroad during my time in med school, gaining useful international medical experience. I know such internships would be hard to find during my residency, but I would like to have this opportunity.

I am searching for a specialty which would give me a relatively good work-life balance. With internal medicine I will have to do 5-6 years residency just to get the general one, and then 3 more years for something more profound. So I am 26 now, will be at least 35 when I will be able to start my own practice. And I am not even sure if I want to have a practice with regular patients coming in to check them and prescribe medications. I also don't like the idea of committing to only one specialty for the rest of my life. But I would like to have the freedom of working both in a practice or in a hospital, that is why I gave up on surgery for example, even though I like it as well. Does all this sound crazy?

I am more and more thinking about radiology at this point.

All in all, I am deeply confused. I just want to find something that suites me so I could be able to give my best to my patients and colleagues. Any advice?


General Pediatrics
10+ Year Member
Apr 18, 2008
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  1. Attending Physician
Residency sucks in one way or another.
Your time becomes very limited.
I am not familiar with the German system but I assume you eventually have to stick with one specialty to practice in.
Jumping between specialties is very rare, at least in the US, because you'll have to go through residency again.
There is no "perfect" specialty. All have its ups and downs.
You have to sit down and really think about what you want to do after residency. Sometimes the answer comes down to "what I can tolerate doing for 10, 15, 20 years down the line" rather than "what I find interesting."
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Jun 23, 2019
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  1. Resident [Any Field]
Come to America
Do Radiology
Live like a king and eat all the sausage

(Sorry, that’s about all I got for ya!)
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