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do you have any advice for someone who wants to become an anesthesiologist?

#medicine #healthcare #anesthesiologist

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Jonathan’s Answer

Great Question! For those on this feed who do not know, an anesthesiologist is a doctor who works with surgeons and other physicians to provide anesthesia (pain relief, unconsciousness for surgery, etc) during medical procedures. These individuals must go through the same education as "regular" doctors before becoming an anesthesiologist. They differ from anesthetists [more commonly called nurse anesthetists or CRNA(s)] because they are licensed physicians and not nurses who have completed extra training to provide anesthesia. This is important to your question because...

Anesthesiologists commonly supervise CRNAs as well as "running" their own anesthesia care. Anesthesiologists also have to work very closely with surgeons to coordinate care for their patients. So my advice to anyone who wants to become an anesthesiologist is to:

1. Get involved in leadership opportunities. You will be in charge of patients and other healthcare workers caring for those patients. Get used to being a leader.

2. Learn to work in teams. Not only will you be directing other anesthesia healthcare workers but you will be working with surgeons who will want things one way instead of the common way. Compromises will be made. Just be sure your patient is safe and secure.

3. Be self-motivated. Anesthesiologists are the masked crusaders. They are the doctors who have the ultimate responsibility for patients when they are in the operating/procedure room without receiving much or any recognition.

If you can be a leader, team member, and be self-motivated you can be a great anesthesiologist. Ultimately my advice would be to get involved in a leadership role where you can actively manage a team and will be able to do this without much outside motivation (exmples: Clubs, student organizations, supervisor roles at work, etc.)

Because you have to go to medical school as well these things help:
1. Pick one regular (weekly to monthly) and stick with that throughout college. Random volunteering looks worse than full commitment to one thing over a long time.
2. Good Grades. This ones self explanatory.
3. Have fun/Practice Mindfulness. Anesthesiologists are calm, cool, and collected in the worst situations. Learn to role with the punches and be the collected one in the room even if "it's" hitting the fan.

- Anesthesiology Resident
Graduating 2024
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Richard’s Answer

You will need to get good grades in college in order to apply for medical school. At the medical school I attended, the average GPA is reported to be 3.85, so even one or two B's can hurt your chances of acceptance.
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Estelle’s Answer

Anesthesiologists often deal with routine healthy patients undergoing uncomplicated procedures, but when they are called for emergencies, they are placed in very stressful situations. If you are considering anesthesiology as a profession, make sure that you do well making decisions under pressure. Even though most of their time is spent performing the same procedures over and over, they are absolutely critical doctors in life saving emergencies. They need to be very knowledgeable about medications and how they interact with anesthetics as well as how underlying illnesses impact response to medications.

Many anesthesiologists are in group practices, so they have scheduled hours and established call schedules. They are employees so do not have to run a practice or hire/fire employees. They can focus on practicing their specialty instead of running the business of the office.
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Monica’s Answer

Anesthesiology is an often misunderstood field. We are not merely "legal drug pushers", but must possess a vast understanding of multiple disciplines in order to keep the patient not only asleep, but safe throughout the procedure. Contrary to popular belief, this specialty is not for people who find trouble connecting with others. You are taking over vital body functions, such as breathing and consciousness, rendering the patient completely vulnerable. Establishing an empathic connection with an individual who is nervous or even frightened is not only desirable, but necessary for a successful outcome. It is both a great privilege and great responsibility to work this profession.
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