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Considering medical school

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MackandBlues

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So I'm a clinical pharmacist almost 5 years out of school. Currently I work in the emergency medicine department of a Level 1 trauma center in a major city and I love it. But I want to do more. I mostly stand on the sidelines and listen/watch the doctors do the work and then make a recommendation or not on how to best treat the patient. I want to be in there getting my hands dirty so to speak and treating the patients myself. I love learning and really want the education that doctors have.

I keep trying to tell myself that I am happier working my 40 hours per week but I can't stop thinking about medical school. I like my job but I want more. I guess I'm trying to decide if its worth 7 years of my life to change careers and become an EM physician. I would need to study and take the MCAT so its too late for this application cycle so I'd be 31 when I matriculated. Any non-trads with words of wisdom?
 

Only Zool

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If that's what you want, go for it! A lot of us gave up other careers to pursue careers as physicians. Being 31, IMO, is just fine. Entering class stats for my top 3 hopefuls had people as old as 42. I do hear that adcoms are harder on people who leave other careers to go into medicine, but I can't say for sure.
 

ChemMed

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So I'm a clinical pharmacist almost 5 years out of school. Currently I work in the emergency medicine department of a Level 1 trauma center in a major city and I love it. But I want to do more. I mostly stand on the sidelines and listen/watch the doctors do the work and then make a recommendation or not on how to best treat the patient. I want to be in there getting my hands dirty so to speak and treating the patients myself. I love learning and really want the education that doctors have.

I keep trying to tell myself that I am happier working my 40 hours per week but I can't stop thinking about medical school. I like my job but I want more. I guess I'm trying to decide if its worth 7 years of my life to change careers and become an EM physician. I would need to study and take the MCAT so its too late for this application cycle so I'd be 31 when I matriculated. Any non-trads with words of wisdom?

Think carefully about this. If you want to do more, is there anything else you could see yourself doing on the side of your job that fills your needs? Do the financial and emotional math as well and determine if a 7 year minimum price tag is worth it. If it is, welcome to the club there is lots of great advice here. If its not then :thumbup: as well. 31 is not that old in this forum at least.
 

Dharma

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So I'm a clinical pharmacist almost 5 years out of school. Currently I work in the emergency medicine department of a Level 1 trauma center in a major city and I love it. But I want to do more. I mostly stand on the sidelines and listen/watch the doctors do the work and then make a recommendation or not on how to best treat the patient. I want to be in there getting my hands dirty so to speak and treating the patients myself. I love learning and really want the education that doctors have.

I keep trying to tell myself that I am happier working my 40 hours per week but I can't stop thinking about medical school. I like my job but I want more. I guess I'm trying to decide if its worth 7 years of my life to change careers and become an EM physician. I would need to study and take the MCAT so its too late for this application cycle so I'd be 31 when I matriculated. Any non-trads with words of wisdom?

31 is still young. I'll be 34 on my first day of classes and I know for sure that there are older out there. There will be plenty of folks who will say that if you can think of anything else you would be happy doing besides medicine then go with that. There may be some wisdom in those words but then again, it's such a broad-sweeping statement that it may not hold true for everyone.

You have a great job and you love it. You ready to give that all up and roll the dice for something that may not be so "sexy" once you're on the other side of things? Or how about working the crazy schedule filled with overnight shifts in the ER in your late 30s? 7-7s are all good when it's AM-to-PM but flipping back and forth is a whole new ballgame as one ages. Maybe you won't even match into EM and you will have to settle for IM. Would that be ok with you? How about the prospect of being almost a decade older than the rest of your classmates, some of whom will flock around in high-schoolish cliques? (And they totally do; I'm in an SMP and it's like frigging HS with some of these kids).

I'm sure I can come up with more. Actually, I'm sure you can if you give it enough thought. If you want it bad enough, none of this will keep you from saying F*k it, studying for the MCAT (do check out the MCAT threads, esp Sn2ed's threads), and going all-out with this thing. Best of luck. You'll make the right choice.
 

MackandBlues

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Yea as a pharmacist working in a hospital, our hours are already "wacky" - we have to work the occasional midnight and "double back" meaning working untill 11pm and then having to be back to work at 6:30am which means less than 5 hours of sleep with my commute. And seniority doesn't matter.

Thanks for the comments so far - you guys bring up good points that I'll need to think about which is why I posted in the first place :)
 

Law2Doc

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Yea as a pharmacist working in a hospital, our hours are already "wacky" - we have to work the occasional midnight and "double back" meaning working untill 11pm and then having to be back to work at 6:30am which means less than 5 hours of sleep with my commute. And seniority doesn't matter.

Thanks for the comments so far - you guys bring up good points that I'll need to think about which is why I posted in the first place :)

You are not even approaching too old, and a pharmacy background definitely will be an asset during the clinical years and internship -- I used to have you guys on speed dial. I caution that level 1 trauma and ED is perhaps a more sexy aspect of medicine than most for some people, and you have to slog through a lot to get to that point. There's no guarantee you will end up getting EM (even though it's not the pinnacle of competitiveness, yet), end even if you do, you may not land a position at a Place that sees the sexy traumas rather than merely 1000 cases of URI each week. Since you are plugged into the hospital system, you may want to find a stressed out surgery or IM resident you can shadow during a weekend overnight ICU call to get a better sense of some of the less sexy aspects of residency. As a nontrad you are expected to do more due diligence, but once you are sure you will like it, go for it.
 

gonnif

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I have had students in their 30s, 40s and 50s go to both MD and DO school. Age shouldnt be a factor in deciding if you can to medical school. Where you want to be in life: financially, family, lifestyle, etc, those are much more important factors to consider. And also remember, in many ways, you dont have to make the final committed decision until you have an acceptance letter in your hand
 
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