Plus two points for quoting Spock At least thats what I'm guessing...These are all pretty "me" specific, but I guess I can't say for anyone else, so here goes...
- Cancer treatment is fascinating, interesting, ever-changing, and truly multidisciplinary. Never, ever going to get bored in this field.
- Treating an illness (cancer) that represents a significant challenge/event in pt's lives. No family members falling asleep in consult rooms here. The pts are almost always truly grateful.
- Using a treatment modality which changes with technological advancement. I've always been kind of a gadget/computer-type guy, so I love this stuff. Plus, I actually enjoy using the multiple computer systems to which we are exposed: Pinnacle (ADAC), Eclipse, Impaq, etc.
- No in-house call, no weekends (as long as you get your work done during the week, that is)
- Good reimbursement (even if-when- reimbursements drop, we're still coming from a pretty high place already, so I feel confident things will be fine for me and mine)
- Using a treatment with a definite endpoint: i.e. the pt comes in with x, we use y to try and achieve z goal. Chronic disease management isn't my thing.
- Not having to deal (as much) with diagnosis. Puzzles were never my thing either.
- We are some of the very few docs who actually see all types of pts: from peds to adult to gyn and all in between. How many specialities other than Ob/Gyn really know how to do a pelvic exam?
- Not having to do a fellowship. This is NICE.
- Getting into residency is a royal PITA.
- As mentioned before, we're at the end of the referral chain. Comes with being so specialized, but it does mean you have to make sure you know where your referrals are coming from. In some regions, competition between radoncs can be pretty intense- and I'm not alll about "let's make gift baskets for the referring medical oncologists." I don't want to feel like a realtor. Your choice in job can help minimize this problem, though.
- Some days can be downers, to be sure. Not all, but some.
- Finally, and least importantly, learning to live with the fear that someday there will be a non-RT cancer "cure" that suddenly makes us obsolete. Do I think this is even a possibiltiy? No. Does it keep me awake at night? No. Would I be mad if this happened? Not at all. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few*.
p.s. Movie quote. Source, anyone? Googling it = cheating.