Trauma Surgeon: Salary, Lifestyle, Hours, etc.

Discussion in 'Clinical Rotations' started by [email protected], Feb 9, 2002.

  1. jasonw@bayou.com

    [email protected] Junior Member

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    Hi,

    I will be attending medical school in the fall. As it stands now, I am quite interested in the area of trauma surgery in a level 1 trauma facility. I know that my interests will change many times before it is all over. However, I am quite interested in learning about trauma surgery. Specifically, how would a trauma suregeon's lifestyle compare to that of say a general surgeon? What about hours worked per week compared between the two? Do trauama surgeons have a relative difficulty finding jobs in Level 1 centers? Also, I am quite interested in learning how the average yearly compensation compares, as I have not been able to find much info on dedicated trauma surgeons salaries.

    Thanks to all who can help,
    Jason
    [email protected]
     
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  3. carddr

    carddr Senior Member

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    Jason, check out salary.com. They won't give you all the answers but may eliminate some. Location is a factor.
     
  4. jasonw@bayou.com

    [email protected] Junior Member

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    I have checked out salary.com and couldn't find anything about trauma surgery. While I am extremely interested to know how the salaries of a trauma surgeon compare to a genereal suregeon, there are many other questions I have, such as lifestyle. Thanks for the help. Any one have any ideas?

    Jason
     
  5. hosskp1

    hosskp1 Senior Member

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    Forget about money for the time being-- it will take 5-6years of general surgery and then 1-2 years of a trauma-critical care fellowship. You will not have much free time or compensation during the training (you will really hate yourself if you do not really want to be there). Then when you are practicing at a trauma center-- you will be very busy all the time (which can be good or bad depending on how you look at it). Trauma surgeons work more, get paid about the same, and have less free time the general surgeon. The compensation varies with area- the more populated large cities will not pay as much as suburban rural areas. IMHO, I think you are jumping a bunch of steps keep an open mind still. I am a third year and looking at going into this field (trauma/critical). I checked out ER, FP, Int MEd, PMR, anesthesiology and Radiology before I decided on going into surgery ( I am not completely sure if I want to try to go into ortho yet). Do not count anything out just yet, keep an open mind and then if you still want to go into your first choice-- then you have not short changed yourself.
     
  6. jasonw@bayou.com

    [email protected] Junior Member

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    Believe me money is not the driving factor, and I am keeping an extremely open mind. However, I am wanting to know more about the trauma surgeon lifestyle. As far as the pay goes I have a general idea of most every specialty except the trauma/critical care surgeon. I was just wanting to know now if trauma surgeons work more and get paid less than general surgeons.

    Thanks again to anyone who can help, especially with some numbers about avg. hours per week worked, call, and pay.

    Jason
     
  7. Whisker Barrel Cortex

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    Although I can't give you details on the exact number of hours, I can say that the trauma surgeons at our hospital are on call IN HOUSE q4. This includes one who is about 55 years old! Its kind of strange to see an older doc staying in a call room. They seem to really enjoy their work and do a lot of great things.
     
  8. jasonw@bayou.com

    [email protected] Junior Member

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    Whisker,

    What hospital do you work at? When you say on call q4 do you mean in house for 4 24 hour shifts a week or every 4th day or something else? Thanks for the help very much. Anyone else have any information?

    Jason
     
  9. Whisker Barrel Cortex

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    Sorry, I forgot how much medical terminology I've learned in the past few years. Q4 means that they are in the hospital overnight every fourth night. On the days that they are not on-call overnight, they are in the hospital during the day.

    Although I prefer not to tell you what hospital I am a at, it is a major university medical center with Truama 1 certification in the midwest.
     
  10. jasonw@bayou.com

    [email protected] Junior Member

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    Thanks for the info. I figured after I posted it was every 4th something. How many days a week do they get off (are not working or on call)?
     
  11. Whisker Barrel Cortex

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    I'm not quite sure about the days off. I might have some better info when I talk to my roommate tommorrow, who rotated on trauma surgery and is planning on going into surgery.
     
  12. jasonw@bayou.com

    [email protected] Junior Member

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    Thanks, I'd really appreciate any info anyone could share.
     
  13. droliver

    Moderator Emeritus

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    Actually, with attention to billing a lot of trauma/critical care surgeons are billing more than most general, vascular, & oncologic surgeons @ a # of places. There are a lot of jobs available & the salaries start out pretty good @ a number of them. A lot of places also do not have in house trauma attendings, but rather they are available on call @ home. I don't think the lifestyle is harder for them than most general or vascular guys. The tension b/w research & revenue production from private practice is however prevalent @ most University programs for them, but a lot of trauma surgeons are at private level I or II center & just have clinical practices.
     

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