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Will becoming a doctor be worth the time and energy?

Is it worth all the money you'll have to spend, the amount of studying you'll have to do, and the fact that you'll have to hold of on things like having a family? #doctor #medicine #surgeon #medical-school #medical-school


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Richard’s Answer

Yes! It is absolutely worth it. There are a lot of long hours studying in the library followed by long hours in the hospital, but it is a fulfilling career. There are so many opportunities after medical school... different specialties appeal to different individuals. Or you can follow a nonclinical route in research or even hospital administration.

If you can keep your expenses down (live with parents, attend community college which can be free in some cities, complete your degree at an inexpensive public institution etc) debt doesn't have to be out of control. However the typical student does not do everything they can to decrease expenses then has to be stressed during their first years of practice.

Another unfortunate consequence of debt is limiting the student's choices after graduation. If a student has a passion for pediatrics, but crippling debt, they may be forced to apply to residencies with higher future earning potential.

A typical experience would be to complete residency and become an employee of a group. You aren't able to pay down your debt much because you are saving to become a partner. You buy into the group and then start making partnership money. That's when you are able to really tackle that debt.


But typically you are looking at 10-15 years to pay back your student debt.

On a side note, watch this video which compares a UPS driver to a physician. It makes a lot of assumptions about debt and saving/investment, but concludes that the average primary care physician doesn't become financially better off than a driver until age 53.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2503XQU1feE\

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Raymond’s Answer

There is no right answer to your question because it's basically a personal decision. I can tell you from my own experience that being a doctor involves a lot of challenges. The ones you've named (money for tuition, time spent studying and away from one's family) are just some of the obvious ones.
The reward from being a doctor is the satisfaction of being in a position to make a difference in someone's life. In some cases, that difference can be HUGE, life-changing and, in some specialties, life-saving. I don't know of any other profession that offers the same kind of reward.
Wanting to be a doctor must be a passion; otherwise, it's probably not for you.

Raymond recommends the following next steps:

Talk to and spend time with a doctor.
Saved!
Volunteer in a hospital or clinic and find out if you like taking care of patients
Saved!
Ask yourself if you are passionate about being a doctor
Saved!

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Raymond’s Answer

There is no right answer to your question because it's basically a personal decision. I can tell you from my own experience that being a doctor involves a lot of challenges. The ones you've named (money for tuition, time spent studying and away from one's family) are just some of the obvious ones.
The reward from being a doctor is the satisfaction of being in a position to make a difference in someone's life. In some cases, that difference can be HUGE, life-changing and, in some specialties, life-saving. I don't know of any other profession that offers the same kind of reward.
Wanting to be a doctor must be a passion; otherwise, it's probably not for you.

Raymond recommends the following next steps:

Talk to and spend time with a doctor.
Saved!
Volunteer for a hosptial or clinic and find out if you like taking care of patients
Saved!
Ask yourself if you're passionate about being a doctor
Saved!

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Rachel’s Answer

Yes, if you want to participate in the medical field, the work is worth the sacrifice. If you want to be a physician, the work starts in college. Any 4 year university should be able to provide you with all of the premed requirements (1 year biology, 1 year inorganic chemistry, 1 year organic chemistry + labs, physics, calculus, and biochemistry). Once accepted to medical school, as long as you pass your classes and perform reasonably well during your four years of medical training, you can apply for a 3- 5 year residency. Following that, you may also apply for a fellowship for additional training. It can be a long, but fulfilling road.

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