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PA vs MD, specific circumstances, money not an issue, etc

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ariiiibar1021

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Hi, I had some questions regarding pa school vs med school that I was hoping to get some insight on from those who have more experience than I do, so I make the right decision and don't regret it in the future.

Prereq wise for PA school I still need biochem, microbio, genetics, and Ochem lab (depending on the school), for med school I just need biochem and ochem lab. I also need to take the gre/mcat. I'm 23 and just graduated undergrad in May 2017, am currently taking ochem at a local school. I do not have required hours for health care experience for PA school. Either way, I would apply summer 2019.

I would like to do PM&R if I'm an attending, which is not as "competitive" of a specialty and has a more regular hours residency (or so I hear).

My main concern is stress and burnout. I have been feeling this the last 2 years of undergrad and find it difficult to study occasionally, pending a school break. After a break, I am good again for some time, then burn out again but push through until the next break. My education will thankfully be funded by my parents (as long as I graduate), so debt concerns are not an issue.

PA school is year-round (no summer). Med school has summer after first year, and 4th year is supposedly easier and not stressful. The residency I desire is also not difficult hour-wise (If I match into it). So, the difference is 2nd year and intern resident year in terms of difficult years between PA & MD school. I will have more options and a higher salary as an MD. I also know I do like to be in charge decision wise. However, PA school will get me working sooner with less chance of burnout (or perhaps this isn't true as class attendance is required and there's no summer break, whereas med schools have students watching lectures on their own at double speed, and there is a summer). I value family and free time, but I think this is more dependent on setting than job title.

What are your thoughts on my particular set of circumstances?
 

Blanky

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Aren’t most prereqs for PA micro and A/P. I don’t think you need Orgo lab or Biochem
 
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ariiiibar1021

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Aren’t most prereqs for PA micro and A/P. I don’t think you need Orgo lab or Biochem
I've taken A/P as part of my kinesiology major, and some pa schools are now requiring biochem, specifically one in my state which I'd apply to.
 

jazzmetal

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I do like to be in charge decision wise. However, PA school will get me working sooner with less chance of burnout
Consider short-term burnout in school vs. long-term burnout in your career. If you know you like to be in charge, you'll likely end up frustrated with the limitations of being a PA. I'd go for MD while you're young - residency might be rough, but you'll have the best chance of powering through it now, and probably be happier in the long run. My perspective: very late career changer (from something non-medical) who wishes I'd gone with science and medicine from the beginning.
 
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