Law2Doc

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just curious:
would any of you guys peruse medicine if you could get paid the same as the type of doctor you want to be doing something else?
...
Many nontrad career changers are going to end up earning less in medicine than they would have amassed had they stayed put in their prior careers for the decade of schooling and training. So obviously, the answer is yes. You don't go into medicine for the money. That's not going to make you happy when you are working 70 hours/week for the next 40 years as an orthopod. In professions, you cannot live for the weekends like you can in a 9-5 "job". You have to like it. The pay, the lifestyle, etc are all perquisites that can either sweeten or tarnish the pot, but they cannot BE the pot. Go into something you enjoy, find interesting, get satisfaction from. The rest of your life is a long time, and medicine is one of those careers that is going to monopolize most of your time during the rest of your life. All the money in the world isn't worth mortgaging away your life doing something you don't enjoy. So pick the career, and then see if it's adequately salaried. Not the other way round. take it from a career changer who is taking this route at a financial loss -- it's not about the money. That's a foolish way to squander your life. There are careers better suited to that mentality if you want to put in the same kind of effort.
 

chocchipcookie

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if i could do anything in the world, i'd host a scuba diving show on the travel channel :) and getting paid 200k+ on top of getting to travel and be famous... word! lol
 

HawaiiHereICome

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If I could pursue an interesting and rewarding career that didn't land me in astronomical debt and didn't steal away so much of the time I could have just had fun in my youth, and still get paid what a doctor gets paid, I think I definitely would! That career for me would have consisted of being a photojournalist for the National Geographic:D

Oh, and BTW, anyone who says money isn't a factor when it comes to pursuing medicine is either:

1) incredibly wealthy already
2) naive and idealistic
3) lying.
The reality is that most premeds have not spent enough time in different clinical environments to truly understand the magnitude of commitment associated with being a physician. I spent ~2500 hours (~1400 ED and 1100 Surg) working in different clinical environments prior to starting medical school. I would probably teach or do something academic if compensation drops dramatically.
 

Amdavadi

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For those of you who think Money is a big factor, I sorta agree with you but I'd like to ask you all to think of it this way. In your first real job as a doctor after residency or fellowship, how much money would you really be happy taking home every month after your loan and malpractice insurance payments are taken into account for. I ask this because everyone's debt is gonna be different (120K to 500K) and so is their malpractice insurance depending on their specialty (ranging from 40K to 110K/yr). So obviously someone with higher debt would want a higher salary and same for higher malpractice insurance. That's why guys, why don't we do this? Everyone just write the amount they'll be happy with taking home every month after all is set and done. Personally, I'd like to take home close to at least 10 to 12K per month. Anything less than that and it wouldn't work for me. And fyi, I'm thinking of specializing in either neurology or neurosurgery. So my salary has to be above 225K for me to make that much amount each month but if someone comes in and says we'll pardon your debt and waive your malpractice ins., I'd be more than happy to work for 120 to 150K as a neurosurgeon. Get my point?

Now let's hear your numbers and reasonings.
 

Amdavadi

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Have you ever shadowed a neurosurgeon for more than a couple of hours [or at all]?
Yes I have. Total of 30 hours in last two months to be exact. Now I could assume what your point is but I rather hear it from you. Fyi, I also work for a general surgeon right now.
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

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Yes I have. Total of 30 hours in last two months to be exact. Now I could assume what your point is but I rather hear it from you. Fyi, I also work for a general surgeon right now.
Have you ever watched him try to preform surgery? Do you understand that a neurosurgeon is probably more stressful a career then any you have known? 1 wrong move and your patient is now dead or paralyzed forever. I personally wouldn't go into neurosurgery if I were going to be paid 100k a month. Now if your actually saying you want to work as a neurosurgeon under that much stress for 125k a year go ahead, btw you'll probably look 80 when your 40 years old.
 

she woolf

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Hmm..I'd want to be one of those people on Discovery Channel that travel the world and observe/look for endagered/rare animals. I'm really interested in IM/EM I don't remember what they make though :rolleyes: As lobg as I have enough money for me myself and I LOL its all good :D
 

elftown

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I'd probably do exactly what I am doing now: going into medicine and considering picking up a master's or so down the line (not in biomedical research, but something else that I enjoy, like ecology/conservation biology).
 

Amdavadi

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Have you ever watched him try to preform surgery? Do you understand that a neurosurgeon is probably more stressful a career then any you have known? 1 wrong move and your patient is now dead or paralyzed forever. I personally wouldn't go into neurosurgery if I were going to be paid 100k a month. Now if your actually saying you want to work as a neurosurgeon under that much stress for 125k a year go ahead, btw you'll probably look 80 when your 40 years old.
Well I've scrubbed in for two of his surgeries so far.. other time was just surgical consult. You're right in that it is extremely stressful but it really doesn't bother me. Actually it's the risk (not money) that makes it extremely appealing to me. And trust me I won't look like 80 when I'm 40 ;)
 

jm192

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Yah thats why only 50% of premeds become doctors. My post's are not ridiculous my dear, I'm a realist with a opinion which is more then likely similar in sentiments to most people. If your actually stupid enough to consider medicine some sort of calling for half the guys on here then your just lying to yourself. Your sadly trying to rationalize medicine for yourself, because in the end, MEDICINE IS A CAREER CHOICE.
You don't want to hear my garbage then don't read my posts. Problem solved.
Well done sir! I hate the notion that medicine is some higher calling from God himself. If you can't envision doing another job for 150K, that doesn't require taking call, doesn't require 4 years of undergrad, 4 years of medical school, and 3+ years of residency...then might I remind you where liars go?

I spent 2 years at McDonalds and left the second I had something better lined up. But, if they had said "Jm192, don't leave. Don't even leave us for school. We'll give you 200K a year until you don't want money no more." I would have asked if they wanted fries with that.

Don't go 200K into debt? Ok. Don't give up ALL of your 20's to become educated, overworked, and listen to people bitch about how doctors are bankrupting America for the next 35 years? Ok.

The truth is, at some point, I realized mommy and daddy were eventually going to stop paying all of my crap. This led to the great question: where will I get money?!

A JOB. Not a higher calling. I am not going into medicine because of the money. The sole reason I decided to get A JOB at all was for money.

Yes, I am compassionate. And yes, I love helping people, and look forward to doing it for the next 30, 40, 50 years. I'd love to make sick people better, send the school teachers back so the kids can learn, and send Grandma home for Christmas. That will be an amazingly rewarding part of MY JOB. I'd hate that I wasn't getting to experience that.

But, believe me, if McDonalds was going to ante up, I'd learn to live without.
 

torshi

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Royalewithcheese, I'm so glad that there are people like you going into medicine. I too can't see myself doing anything else regardless of pay. As for anyone who is going into medicine to make their nut(get rich), you have to be very foolish. It is very possible that sometime in the near future legislation could be passed that would drastically change how physicians are compensated. I know the argument is that that can be said about any career but most careers DO NOT require you to give up a decade of the best years of your life on schooling alone! Not to mention all the other sacrifices you will have to make. So next time you think you are being a original or heroic for sighting money as your main motivator for pursuing medicine, think twice because your really look reckless and ignorant.

I agree also, i cannot see myself doing anything else for a career other than medicine, even tho it's a very long process and very grueling one, it's just something i want to sacrifice and be proud of. It's just i have this feeling inside that pushes me even harder to just strive for success. Medicine is tough but something in me wants to go through the crazy process and I'm willing to do so!
 

Charles_Carmichael

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Pretty much every single job helps people in one way or another. So I kinda tend to laugh when people tell me they're going into medicine to help people.
 

torshi

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I think most people would have gone that way. It's not that premeds are in it primarily for the money. But money does provide for some the deciding factor. Many premeds are smart and do have interests in the body as well as understanding how it functions and treatments. But its a long road from a interest to sacrificing nearly 10 years of your life and working 80 hours a week. I'll say that for me medicine provides many outlets for my interests, but that doesn't mean I couldn't see myself doing other things with much less sacrifice. Money is always a factor, just don't let it be your one and only factor is the popular sentiment.
I have to agree with this.
Yes there are a lot of premeds that try to hide the factors revolving around medicine and hide the 'real" truth. Yes, we all like medicine and we all know it is a rewarding career and that's the reason we want to get in it.
Sadly, everyone tries to deny it, obviously this is the career choice where you can have a wonderful decent living, but there's a lot of sacrifice involved. And i guarantee if you had the same amount of pay for medicine for some other field, minus the 4 extra years, there would be even few more docs. Sadly.
But, i don't think it's all about the money..I'm sure most premeds, deep down really enjoy saving lives, but they do realize pay is good and that's one main attraction to medicine. If pay was horrible then you know the outcome is not great
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

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I have to agree with this.
Yes there are a lot of premeds that try to hide the factors revolving around medicine and hide the 'real" truth. Yes, we all like medicine and we all know it is a rewarding career and that's the reason we want to get in it.
Sadly, everyone tries to deny it, obviously this is the career choice where you can have a wonderful decent living, but there's a lot of sacrifice involved. And i guarantee if you had the same amount of pay for medicine for some other field, minus the 4 extra years, there would be even few more docs. Sadly.
But, i don't think it's all about the money..I'm sure most premeds, deep down really enjoy saving lives, but they do realize pay is good and that's one main attraction to medicine. If pay was horrible then you know the outcome is not great
For the most part everyone enjoys the concept of saving and helping people. We've all been conditioned to believe that empathy and altruism are virtues of the highest magnitude. But in the end that's all idealism and once you've got a tangible grasp of the way the world works then the reality sets in. It's just that for most freshman and maybe sophomore pre-meds their thinking is still very idealistic and lack the anchor of reality. Moving down the age trail I doubt you'll find one non-trad or senior pre-med who's not thinking in a pragmatic way about medicines role in their life.
 
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Drrrrrr. Celty

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Well done sir! I hate the notion that medicine is some higher calling from God himself. If you can't envision doing another job for 150K, that doesn't require taking call, doesn't require 4 years of undergrad, 4 years of medical school, and 3+ years of residency...then might I remind you where liars go?

I spent 2 years at McDonalds and left the second I had something better lined up. But, if they had said "Jm192, don't leave. Don't even leave us for school. We'll give you 200K a year until you don't want money no more." I would have asked if they wanted fries with that.

Don't go 200K into debt? Ok. Don't give up ALL of your 20's to become educated, overworked, and listen to people bitch about how doctors are bankrupting America for the next 35 years? Ok.

The truth is, at some point, I realized mommy and daddy were eventually going to stop paying all of my crap. This led to the great question: where will I get money?!

A JOB. Not a higher calling. I am not going into medicine because of the money. The sole reason I decided to get A JOB at all was for money.

Yes, I am compassionate. And yes, I love helping people, and look forward to doing it for the next 30, 40, 50 years. I'd love to make sick people better, send the school teachers back so the kids can learn, and send Grandma home for Christmas. That will be an amazingly rewarding part of MY JOB. I'd hate that I wasn't getting to experience that.

But, believe me, if McDonalds was going to ante up, I'd learn to live without.
Too bad the world isn't like that eh?
 

Ursa

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For a room full of so many neurotic pre-meds, there sure are a lot of typos on here. I'm not going to name any names though. *cough*serenade*cough*
 

Lunasly

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I have to say: your posts are so ridiculous that I wish you would stop being the first person to comment on everything. I'm pretty sure that mostly everyone who reads this forum would become a doctor regardless. Maybe you should be an historian or something other than a premed.

And if your thing is that you want to make money doing basically anything, maybe you should consider a different field. Most of us on here want to be docs because we can't consider another option and it's just who we are. Not to be blunt (lol), but no-one wants to hear your garbage.

No offense?
Relax buddy. They can post whatever they want.
 
Sep 5, 2010
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As much as I'd love to be a doctor, I'd probably switch to fashion designer if I got the same pay.

God knows it'd be more fun/easier for me.
 

ElChamaco

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No. Getting an MD/PhD in Anthropology and being a doctor is exactly what I want to do with my life. For some, medicine is more a vocation than a job. Going through medical school doesn't necessarily change that perspective. I've met people on the other side who still don't believe medicine is just a "job".
 

TarHeelEMT

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If I could get paid 100K to work for as a medic for YOSAR, I probably would do that instead.

But I can't, so it's a moot point.
 

Drrrrrr. Celty

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For a room full of so many neurotic pre-meds, there sure are a lot of typos on here. I'm not going to name any names though. *cough*serenade*cough*
In here, not on here. Unless your intention is to be on top of the room then you've got a nice typo right there ol'chap :rolleyes:.

Anyways I'm hardly neurotic.
 

Parts Unknown

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Pretty much every single job helps people in one way or another. So I kinda tend to laugh when people tell me they're going into medicine to help people.
Do you? Yugos and Ferraris are both automobiles.

When I was in graduate school I sat at a lab bench and filled up tube after tube of enzymes and reagents, poured gel after gel, wrote page after page. This was done for a mixture of intellectual satisfaction and a larger ostensible purpose of contributing to society through science (aka "helping people"). How much of that effort will ever translate into something unequivocally useful?

In my case the answer rhymes with "beer-o."

Now, as a practicing pathologist, I actively diagnosis disease and aid in guiding treatment. My day-to-day decisions have pretty immediate ramifications in terms of how people will live and die.

Frankly, it kinda makes me laugh even thinking about equating these two roles.