Dec 15, 2013
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I am halfway done with my family medicine residency, but I hate seeing patients. Yes, I feel like this is a big mistake and I've thought about switching specialties during the beginning of my intern year, but now it's no longer an option because I dislike medicine as a whole (do not like radiology/path). I have no solid back-up plan right now in terms of alternative employment, so I am just treating residency as a job and source of income to pay for my monthly expenses. I've thought about quitting multiple times, but with no back-up plan, it's not an option. I've talked to my faculty advisor about this, and she suggested I think about working in prison medicine or family med in other settings (i.e. per diem, urgent care, cruise ship, etc), but although they sound a little bit more appealing than the typical practice seeing continuity patients, I think I'll still be miserable. I've talked to a co-resident-friend about my issue, and she said I should finish residency and get board certification so I always have medicine as a option in case I change my mind and want to practice later (or I'm in a tight spot and need income). That makes sense to me...

Anyway, the reason why I'm posting is: Do you know anyone who finished residency, became board certified, but NOT practice (and not to become stay at home mom or other legit reason, but b/c s/he hates medicine and really dislikes seeing and interacting with patients). As to what I will do for income? Well, I'm not sure right now. Hopefully I can meet a nice guy, get married, and become a stay-at-mom and run a family business or something.

Thanks in advance for your help. I feel like I kind of answered my own question. I just feel kind of hopeless. Any input would be appreciated. I don't know where else to ask for help.
 
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dr_wannabe

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You have a ton of opportunities with an MD. The most obvious is medical consulting - this could be for pharmaceutical companies, electronic health care records, basically any company that sells to the healthcare system. However, depending on their focus, they may want specialists, i.e. oncologist if a pharmaceutical company is developing new chemotherapy drugs. The other medical consulting is for business firms like Kurt Salmons, Huron, etc. The next is general consulting; companies like Accenture, McKinsey, Bain, Boston Consulting Group, etc. The MD adds credibility for any of their consulting teams and they will pay to give you the business training to be able to contribute. Finally, there could be something in hospital administration if you're willing to get an MBA, MHA, or MPH. Hope this helps.
 
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there s always a need for medical writing.. materials like research/ gen articles elating to health and patient education
 
Nov 18, 2012
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Have you considered the US Army? There are positions such as Brigade Surgeon that require an MD/DO to fill the position but are typically administrative in nature.
 

notinkansas

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I think you are wise to stick it out and finish the residency. Not being board certified is rapidly becoming a great stigma. Take that exam and get the credential. That gives you options. Non clinical jobs can be found, but most often they will want BC. I'd suggest you at least consider doing some locum work periodically, maybe a little urgent care work. That way if you ever NEED to work as a doc, you can get credentialed. Because it's hard to get credentialed for even the crappiest doctor jobs if you don't have some clinical experience and can get LOR that are within the past 12-24 months. It's just good to have that earning power- especially if you have student loan debt. At least until you have another career path established.
 

Gastrapathy

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I agree I would not reccomend trying for a brigade surgeon position but if an individual wants the position then.....
I can't think of a worse environment for someone like this. Stop it.

OP, get out into practice and you may stop hating patients. You can work part time.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

VA Hopeful Dr

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Getting another degree that would work well with the MD is always a decent option. Someone mentioned MBA/MHA. You could always consider getting a JD and doing some sort of medical law.
 

sb247

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if you just hate medicine, finish residency and work the highest paying locums gigs you can while ripping through your loans. After a few years, when your loans are paid, you have a lot more options.

You have very few options with $200-300k in debt other than just practicing medicine
 
OP
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Dec 15, 2013
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Resident [Any Field]
if you just hate medicine, finish residency and work the highest paying locums gigs you can while ripping through your loans. After a few years, when your loans are paid, you have a lot more options.

You have very few options with $200-300k in debt other than just practicing medicine
I'm fortunate enough to only have around $55K of debt right now. I'm under the standard 10-year repayment plan (pay $600/month). I like your recommendation- I think I'll be able to pay off my loans after less than 1 year of work after residency.
 

cabinbuilder

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I'm fortunate enough to only have around $55K of debt right now. I'm under the standard 10-year repayment plan (pay $600/month). I like your recommendation- I think I'll be able to pay off my loans after less than 1 year of work after residency.
If you do it right, you can pay that 55K debt by working about 4 months of locums.
 
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A lot of people will mention consulting, medical innovation, etc. as something... but the competition for that is increasing rapidly, and I think more than most people realize. Do you have previous business and startup experience? Finance or math skills? The stomach for doing startups? Did you graduate at a top MD school / residency? Without the above, it can be difficult to get a position at a decent firm.
 

Otto of the Silver-Hand

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Mar 8, 2014
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I am halfway done with my family medicine residency, but I hate seeing patients. Yes, I feel like this is a big mistake and I've thought about switching specialties during the beginning of my intern year, but now it's no longer an option because I dislike medicine as a whole (do not like radiology/path). I have no solid back-up plan right now in terms of alternative employment, so I am just treating residency as a job and source of income to pay for my monthly expenses. I've thought about quitting multiple times, but with no back-up plan, it's not an option. I've talked to my faculty advisor about this, and she suggested I think about working in prison medicine or family med in other settings (i.e. per diem, urgent care, cruise ship, etc), but although they sound a little bit more appealing than the typical practice seeing continuity patients, I think I'll still be miserable. I've talked to a co-resident-friend about my issue, and she said I should finish residency and get board certification so I always have medicine as a option in case I change my mind and want to practice later (or I'm in a tight spot and need income). That makes sense to me...

Anyway, the reason why I'm posting is: Do you know anyone who finished residency, became board certified, but NOT practice (and not to become stay at home mom or other legit reason, but b/c s/he hates medicine and really dislikes seeing and interacting with patients). As to what I will do for income? Well, I'm not sure right now. Hopefully I can meet a nice guy, get married, and become a stay-at-mom and run a family business or something.

Thanks in advance for your help. I feel like I kind of answered my own question. I just feel kind of hopeless. Any input would be appreciated. I don't know where else to ask for help.
What you want to do and maybe how you feel is not unusual and is not new. We in medicine, for some reason, either because of pride or social pressure, feel that we must stay in medicine even though we are miserable.
Not counting the ones who left after internship and med school, I've known at least 6 people who left medicine after their residency/fellowship. Two were in psychiatry, two were in FM. One was in surgery and one was in GI. They all felt similar to some degree that you feel. In fact if you speak to any currently practicing physician, the feelings you described ( hates medicine, dislikes seeing and interacting with patients) is true among all of them to some degree. I mean, After spending the am in the hospital, I'm going to my office this pm and I' m dreading every moment of it.

There are other people who left medicine early in their careers. Two right now manage a mutual fund for T.Rowe Price. Others became writers (Michael Crichton, Robin Cook, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), playwrights (Henrik Ibsen), and poets (John Keats). No need to feel hopeless because as You can see there is life after medicine. As Joseph Campbell used to say "Follow your Bliss."
 
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Outrigger

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I know of a female doctor that completed residency and has maintained her license for over 20 years. She has never practiced medicine. She did, however, marry another doctor, and is his office manager. This allowed her to pay off her medical school loans.

Let me just say that residency can be the worst experience of your career if you want it to be. I actually enjoyed residency, but I knew I wanted a better lifestyle when I got out, so I made sure that happened. I didn't just take the first job that came along. Some doctors have a much worse lifestyle in private practice than they ever did in residency. I recommend that you just suffer through a little bit longer, get board certified, and then just do part time work. Medicine is a lot more fun when you aren't taking call or working on the weekends. So go find yourself a doctor to marry.
 
OP
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Dec 15, 2013
4
1
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Resident [Any Field]
What you want to do and maybe how you feel is not unusual and is not new. We in medicine, for some reason, either because of pride or social pressure, feel that we must stay in medicine even though we are miserable.
Not counting the ones who left after internship and med school, I've known at least 6 people who left medicine after their residency/fellowship. Two were in psychiatry, two were in FM. One was in surgery and one was in GI. They all felt similar to some degree that you feel. In fact if you speak to any currently practicing physician, the feelings you described ( hates medicine, dislikes seeing and interacting with patients) is true among all of them to some degree. I mean, After spending the am in the hospital, I'm going to my office this pm and I' m dreading every moment of it.

There are other people who left medicine early in their careers. Two right now manage a mutual fund for T.Rowe Price. Others became writers (Michael Crichton, Robin Cook, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), playwrights (Henrik Ibsen), and poets (John Keats). No need to feel hopeless because as You can see there is life after medicine. As Joseph Campbell used to say "Follow your Bliss."
Thank you for your encouragement. I want to give you a big hug. I hope you are also trying to find a way out..? I have clinic this afternoon too, but the list does not look too bad. I hope you have a decent afternoon in your office. Let's keep in touch! (if you are interested)
 

gutonc

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Thank you for your encouragement. I want to give you a big hug. I hope you are also trying to find a way out..? I have clinic this afternoon too, but the list does not look too bad. I hope you have a decent afternoon in your office. Let's keep in touch! (if you are interested)
FWIW, clinic as an attending is roughly 2 million percent better than clinic as an attending or fellow.

But if you don't want to stay in medicine, au revoir.
 
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with residency done and FP under your belt I bet you can find something tailored to your needs and get your monthly pay checks. Look into administrative jobs, public health, pharm, etc ,etc. Maybe you'll even learn to like clinic/primary car once you control your practice.
 

MedicineMan99

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I am a board certified Family Physician who just completed residency. I am looking for this type of work and I can say that it is very hard to find. I have had some traction in applying for insurance-reviewer jobs but many of the applications processes for big companies is a black hole. Consulting jobs are even harder to find. And, I have 10 state medical licenses with business experience so I think I'm a pretty good candidate.

By the way, I practice clinical medicine and volunteer, I'm just trying to transition out of it.

So, if anyone has any specific leads for me I'd really appreciate it.

Thanks.
 
Jul 28, 2017
1
0
I am halfway done with my family medicine residency, but I hate seeing patients. Yes, I feel like this is a big mistake and I've thought about switching specialties during the beginning of my intern year, but now it's no longer an option because I dislike medicine as a whole (do not like radiology/path). I have no solid back-up plan right now in terms of alternative employment, so I am just treating residency as a job and source of income to pay for my monthly expenses. I've thought about quitting multiple times, but with no back-up plan, it's not an option. I've talked to my faculty advisor about this, and she suggested I think about working in prison medicine or family med in other settings (i.e. per diem, urgent care, cruise ship, etc), but although they sound a little bit more appealing than the typical practice seeing continuity patients, I think I'll still be miserable. I've talked to a co-resident-friend about my issue, and she said I should finish residency and get board certification so I always have medicine as a option in case I change my mind and want to practice later (or I'm in a tight spot and need income). That makes sense to me...

Anyway, the reason why I'm posting is: Do you know anyone who finished residency, became board certified, but NOT practice (and not to become stay at home mom or other legit reason, but b/c s/he hates medicine and really dislikes seeing and interacting with patients). As to what I will do for income? Well, I'm not sure right now. Hopefully I can meet a nice guy, get married, and become a stay-at-mom and run a family business or something.

Thanks in advance for your help. I feel like I kind of answered my own question. I just feel kind of hopeless. Any input would be appreciated. I don't know where else to ask for help.
I hope this post still gets to you. After all it's been four years since you posted about your issue. I was wondering what happened to you. I was in the same boat as you many years ago. But not only did I finished residency, I also had fellowship because I thought it would make me change my mind. It didn't. The only thing is, it happened in my home country where there were more scarcity of non clinical MD jobs. I did eventually found one as a writer but pay is low. Eventually I got married, migrated here in America and had children and got divorced. I'm now working here as an RN but out of the blue I suddenly have the desire to become a doctor again. I am thinking of taking the USMLE and applying for residency and eventually practicing. I stumbled at your post while researching on what I could do if I do pursue my plans and find out later that I don't like it again. So I hope you let me know what happened to you. I hope you're loving what you're doing now whatever it is.
 

ddjamb

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@penpal, I cannot understand people who go for 4 years undergrad, 4 years med school and 3 years of residency to realize at the end that they hate medicine...I believe medicine is a call...if you going into the field for bad reasons, your life will be miserable. THINK.

@nomoredoctor, if you really hate medicine, SUBWAY is hiring (but there is some interaction with people)... just kidding. Hope you found what makes u happy
 
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ThoracicGuy

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I hope this post still gets to you. After all it's been four years since you posted about your issue. I was wondering what happened to you. I was in the same boat as you many years ago. But not only did I finished residency, I also had fellowship because I thought it would make me change my mind. It didn't. The only thing is, it happened in my home country where there were more scarcity of non clinical MD jobs. I did eventually found one as a writer but pay is low. Eventually I got married, migrated here in America and had children and got divorced. I'm now working here as an RN but out of the blue I suddenly have the desire to become a doctor again. I am thinking of taking the USMLE and applying for residency and eventually practicing. I stumbled at your post while researching on what I could do if I do pursue my plans and find out later that I don't like it again. So I hope you let me know what happened to you. I hope you're loving what you're doing now whatever it is.
Given your years since graduating medical school and years since engaging in medical practice, your chances of finding a residency spot are very low.
 
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OP
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I hope this post still gets to you. After all it's been four years since you posted about your issue. I was wondering what happened to you. I was in the same boat as you many years ago. But not only did I finished residency, I also had fellowship because I thought it would make me change my mind. It didn't. The only thing is, it happened in my home country where there were more scarcity of non clinical MD jobs. I did eventually found one as a writer but pay is low. Eventually I got married, migrated here in America and had children and got divorced. I'm now working here as an RN but out of the blue I suddenly have the desire to become a doctor again. I am thinking of taking the USMLE and applying for residency and eventually practicing. I stumbled at your post while researching on what I could do if I do pursue my plans and find out later that I don't like it again. So I hope you let me know what happened to you. I hope you're loving what you're doing now whatever it is.
Hi, I haven't logged on in a few years and I'm surprised there are posts so many years later. Since graduating from residency I've been working in urgent care. Some days are ok, but most days are exhausting and drain the life out of me. Talking to and listening to patients, and running around multitasking while juggling 3-4 patients is very stressful. I try to deliver good patient care (I.e. good bedside manner, answering questions, listening, etc); my patient satisfaction scores are actually pretty high, but doing so zaps all the energy out of me. Do I like listening to patients talk? Do I like putting on a cheerful, interested face? Do I like annoying patients, or suturing children who freak out and won't keep still? Hell no! I'm introverted and wish I could get all the history I need without listening to a single word! That said, I'd choose urgent care over primary care any day. Out of all the specialties, urgent care is probably the best fit for me. Wish urgent care residency existed, because I'd enjoy it much more than FM. I've learned A LOT on the job post-residency.

Despite all this, I logged back onto SDN because my heart is still not in medicine and I don't want this to be the rest of my life. Looking at all the shifts I'm scheduled for the next few months gives me anxiety and fills me with a sense of dread. How can I do this for the next 20 years until I'm retirement age? Life is short and I don't want to do this day in and day out. There's something wrong when I'm the happiest when my shift is over, and saddest, most irritable at the beginning of the shift. I've been doing some hard thinking about where my passions lie and am trying to have the courage to pursue other endeavor. I'm going to continue working until I have a back up plan and can cut off my golden hand cuffs. Maybe that day will never come, though I hope it does. Wish me luck!

To penpal, I don't think it's a good idea to pursue medicine if you have any doubts that you may not like it. It's a huge investment of your time and money. If you already went through medical training abroad, including fellowship, and didn't like it, I doubt you'd enjoy training/working in the US. You may even hate it more in the US given the worry of malpractice, and the high value that many employers place on patient satisfaction.
 

MedicineMan99

Family Medicine Attending (DO)
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This is a much longer discussion. However, briefly, I stepped out of clinical medicine about a year ago and to this day I think it's the best professional decision I've made. Yes, I maintain all my board certifications and licenses. Like you, I was very good at clinical medicine and had good patient satisfaction scores. The daily grind of medicine, low respect doctors now get (especially in urban areas), patients-as-customers, and subpar pay really got to me. I think physicians are underappreciated, underpaid, and overworked. (We take a lot of abuse from day 1 of being a pre-med so this isn't surprising). I feel medicine is more a customer service industry nowadays. This is especially true in cities where the patients basically mean: "Give me what I want or I will write you a bad Yelp review."

I now work full-time from home for a utilization management company. I work about 35 hours a week and make 2x what I ever earned in Family medicine practice, urgent care, or locums. I get a lot of respect in the business world and I find the job very interesting. I also have a lot of flexibility. No weekends, no evenings, and no call. I actually enjoy my work fully now and "live for weekdays" instead of "living for weekends".

Most of my doctor friends say to me: "Wow, if I could do would you do I would do it, I just don't know how to start."

There are a lot of options for physicians looking to get out of clinical medicine. Join SEAK (an organization for physicians looking for non-traditional careers) and you will see this and get involved. Don't sell yourself short staying in an aspect of a career that you don't love. Remember that a physician has a lot more to offer to society and the healthcare wheel than just clinical medicine. There is A LOT more to medicine than just clinical medicine.
 

AMEHigh

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Hi, I haven't logged on in a few years and I'm surprised there are posts so many years later. Since graduating from residency I've been working in urgent care. Some days are ok, but most days are exhausting and drain the life out of me. Talking to and listening to patients, and running around multitasking while juggling 3-4 patients is very stressful. I try to deliver good patient care (I.e. good bedside manner, answering questions, listening, etc); my patient satisfaction scores are actually pretty high, but doing so zaps all the energy out of me. Do I like listening to patients talk? Do I like putting on a cheerful, interested face? Do I like annoying patients, or suturing children who freak out and won't keep still? Hell no! I'm introverted and wish I could get all the history I need without listening to a single word! That said, I'd choose urgent care over primary care any day. Out of all the specialties, urgent care is probably the best fit for me. Wish urgent care residency existed, because I'd enjoy it much more than FM. I've learned A LOT on the job post-residency.

Despite all this, I logged back onto SDN because my heart is still not in medicine and I don't want this to be the rest of my life. Looking at all the shifts I'm scheduled for the next few months gives me anxiety and fills me with a sense of dread. How can I do this for the next 20 years until I'm retirement age? Life is short and I don't want to do this day in and day out. There's something wrong when I'm the happiest when my shift is over, and saddest, most irritable at the beginning of the shift. I've been doing some hard thinking about where my passions lie and am trying to have the courage to pursue other endeavor. I'm going to continue working until I have a back up plan and can cut off my golden hand cuffs. Maybe that day will never come, though I hope it does. Wish me luck!

To penpal, I don't think it's a good idea to pursue medicine if you have any doubts that you may not like it. It's a huge investment of your time and money. If you already went through medical training abroad, including fellowship, and didn't like it, I doubt you'd enjoy training/working in the US. You may even hate it more in the US given the worry of malpractice, and the high value that many employers place on patient satisfaction.
You don't have to do it for the next 20 years. I'm still in residency, but I'm already networking and getting ideas for how to get out of strictly clinical medicine. I do want to practice for a few years out of residency but afterwards I definitely don't want to be the "traditional" clinical doctor.

Do you live in a rural area? If not, then there should be plenty of networking you can do and job opportunities you can explore outside of working on the clinical side of things. Good luck to you.
 
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ddjamb

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is Clinical medicine that horrible? that is what I am trying to get....am I making a mistake?
 

shopsteward

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Hi, I haven't logged on in a few years and I'm surprised there are posts so many years later. Since graduating from residency I've been working in urgent care. Some days are ok, but most days are exhausting and drain the life out of me. Talking to and listening to patients, and running around multitasking while juggling 3-4 patients is very stressful. I try to deliver good patient care (I.e. good bedside manner, answering questions, listening, etc); my patient satisfaction scores are actually pretty high, but doing so zaps all the energy out of me. Do I like listening to patients talk? Do I like putting on a cheerful, interested face? Do I like annoying patients, or suturing children who freak out and won't keep still? Hell no! I'm introverted and wish I could get all the history I need without listening to a single word! That said, I'd choose urgent care over primary care any day. Out of all the specialties, urgent care is probably the best fit for me. Wish urgent care residency existed, because I'd enjoy it much more than FM. I've learned A LOT on the job post-residency.

Despite all this, I logged back onto SDN because my heart is still not in medicine and I don't want this to be the rest of my life. Looking at all the shifts I'm scheduled for the next few months gives me anxiety and fills me with a sense of dread. How can I do this for the next 20 years until I'm retirement age? Life is short and I don't want to do this day in and day out. There's something wrong when I'm the happiest when my shift is over, and saddest, most irritable at the beginning of the shift. I've been doing some hard thinking about where my passions lie and am trying to have the courage to pursue other endeavor. I'm going to continue working until I have a back up plan and can cut off my golden hand cuffs. Maybe that day will never come, though I hope it does. Wish me luck!

To penpal, I don't think it's a good idea to pursue medicine if you have any doubts that you may not like it. It's a huge investment of your time and money. If you already went through medical training abroad, including fellowship, and didn't like it, I doubt you'd enjoy training/working in the US. You may even hate it more in the US given the worry of malpractice, and the high value that many employers place on patient satisfaction.
You've been working as a fully qualified doctor for what, 2 years now? You should be earning a mint. Given that you hate your job you should also be saving a mint.
I'm recommending to you the MMM website on the subject of early retirement - Mr. Money Mustache

Essentially, his message is:
- save 25x your annual expenses and invest it in low-cost index funds and you are financially secure for the rest of your life without working
- the more you dial down your expenses, the less you have to save.

If you are working full-time as a doctor in urgent care you are earning hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. If you are saving and investing most of that, you will not have to work anything close to another 20 years.
 

BoardingDoc

Don't worry. I've got my towel.
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Feb 23, 2010
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is Clinical medicine that horrible? that is what I am trying to get....am I making a mistake?
This is a largely unanswerable question without knowing the person asking it. Some people love it, some people hate it. I happen to like my job. @nomoredoctor seems to hate theirs. There is a lot of wiggle room in between.
 

pathslides

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is Clinical medicine that horrible? that is what I am trying to get....am I making a mistake?
To me clinical medicine is the worst. Super boring. It's why I went into pathology. Diagnostics is way more interesting to me and laid back.