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Thinking about Anesthesiology


New Member
15+ Year Member
Apr 1, 2004
Lubbock Texas
Hello everyone.

Im Shawn and im Attending Texas Tech University in Lubbock Texas. I have been wanting to become an Anesthesiologist for a long time now. I have a couple of questions if anyone can help me with i Thank you. 1st. how much school is involed? 2. How much money does a good Anesthesiolgist make a year? 3. Is it worth the trouble to become a Dr.? Any type of answers or comments will be greatly appreciated.

Thank You,
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Shawn, I too am very interested in anesthesiology and have been so for a good while now. Even though I am only a college senior, I have researched the field pretty thoroughly...

1. Anesthesiology is a 4 year post graduate study. Typically, a transitional year or traditional rotating internship year is completed first year out of medical school. From that point, there are 3 additional years of specific anesthesia training.

2. The amount of money anesthesiologists make is highly dependent on geographical location and years of experience. On average, a new graduate can probably expect to earn a little over 200k and experienced attending's earnings seem to settle in the upper 200's. Again, this is dependent on geographical location too. You can find jobs as a new grad. practicing in the boondocks...making 300k. If you choose to subspecialize your earnings will obviously be affected as well.

3. Only you can answer this question. I, without hesitation, think it's worth it the become a Dr. When things get hairy in the OR, I don't want my first thought to be...oh shoot, get the anesthesiologist. Even though this might not often be the case...I wouldn't ever want it to be. There are so many more personal reasons I could give but in the end you would have to decide for yourself anyway.
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7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Sep 13, 2003
obadaya- He states he is attending Texas Tech University.....NOT he is an ATTENDING. Our brother from the lower tier school to the north is just gramatically/academically challenged. :D

(I went to UT-Austin for undergrad)

BTW- I went to Tech for med school

Sounds like you need to spend more time in the med school forum rather than this residency forum to get your basic questions about med school answered. As most on here are MS3s-CA1s.
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board certified!
7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Oct 3, 2003
  1. Attending Physician
My question to posts like these is how do you know you want to be an anesthesiologist. Not just you specifically, but even to people that "wanted to be a doctor for a long time". For all I know, maybe you've spent time with people in the field and have some background , but otherwise I'm always curious about statements like that. Otherwise, enter med school with an open mind you may enjoy doing something else. I had a background in anesthesia and until doing my 4th year rotations never thought I would be doing it as a specialty.
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SDN Lifetime Donor
15+ Year Member
Mar 30, 2003
  1. Attending Physician
Anesthesiology, perhaps more than any other field (except maybe nuclear medicine, radiology, and a few subspecialties of medicine and surgery), is one specialty I am very comfortable saying one can not possibly understand well enough prior to entering medical school to be sure you want to go into the field. You just don't have the background to really understand what an anesthesiologist does and appreciate what it means to be an MDA vs a CRNA. First one has to decide on whether or not to become a DOCTOR. If you're still unsure of THAT question, you have a much bigger decision to make than what field to pick once you enter medical school.

The fields people tend to be most sure of prior to medical school, and actually end up specializing in are family practice, pediatrics, psychiatry, ob/gyn and surgery, roughly in that order. I would guess this is because it is easy for the 'layperson' to understand the patient populations treated and the daily work involved in these specialties. A few odd folks who desparately wanted to become radiation oncologists before entering med school find their way there, but those are unusual cases. A friend of mine did research with a group of anesthesiologists prior to med school, and did end up going into anesthesiology, but spent most of med school talking about doing pediatrics.

The bottom line here is to make up your mind about becoming a doctor, the rest will come in time.
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7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Oct 18, 2001
  1. Resident [Any Field]
Interesting comments, powermd.

Turns out quite a few anesthesiologists I've met used to be anesthesia techs in college/high school.

Same for myself; used to be an anesthesia tech, swore I wanted to do a peds subspecialty throughout med school, but found myself enamoured by the specialty of anesthesiology.
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