In basic terms, Medicine is the science, as well as the art of diagnosing, preventing or treating different forms of illnesses. The field fundamentally has a very long list of health care activities which have been tailored to get humans back to their very best healthwise. Indeed, the history and development of medicine dates back to the ancient world. At the time, most parts of the field were seen as Art and they were grossly married with locally championed philosophies and religions. A good illustration is when an acclaimed medical practitioner would accompany the application of herbs with prayers (they were perceived as activators).
Although, with the emergence of modern science, there has been a shift towards an equivalent combination of art and science in medicine. Thus, the name: Medical Science. In essence, in as much as information on activities within the molecular and cellular parts of tissues are ascertained and classified as science, the technique in making use of sutures can be classified as art.
Furthermore, modern medicine makes ample use of genetics, biomedical researches and intrinsic technology for the identification, treatment and prevention of all sorts of diseases known to mankind. These procedures are of course, carried out through surgery and extensive use of pharmaceuticals. Again, medicine equally constitutes the use of therapies, radiation as well as a growing list of other techniques to bring about restoration of health in humans.
In medicine, the two prominent specialists are known as surgeons and physicians. These experts examine patients, identify illnesses and go ahead to apply due treatments for the diagnosed health issues. Equally, they prescribe and conduct tests, using the results as guides when carrying out treatments. The services of surgeons and doctors are always needed in places such as clinics, schools, hospitals and private organizations. They can also be specialists in various medical fields as in: neurology, geriatrics, obstetrics, ophthalmology, primary health care, psychiatry, gynecology, anesthesiology, pediatrics, among others.
NB: On most occasions, a doctor is known as either Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O) or simply as Medical Doctor (M.D). While the appellations are used to refer to physicians who employ the use of surgery and drugs in their practices, a D.O specifically deals with musculoskeletal parts of the body as well as total patient care.
Crucial Things to Consider Before Opting for a Career in Medicine.
Just as it is important in other fields, Medicine enthusiasts are advised to put many factors into consideration before cementing plans to acquire a degree in the field. The factors examined below can serve as guides.
- Are there specific types of physicians that are in high demand?
Without doubts, every type of physician is important in the health care sector, especially when it comes to dealing with the public. However, primary care doctors are particularly relevant and famously sought after in many areas, regions or sectors of a country. Equally, it has been observed that the sufficient availability of primary care doctors within a particular area gives room for improvement on health practices and cuts down expenses. For instance, in the United States, the most common health care practice is primary health care and the demand for the service has been on the increase.
- Will a Medicine career be suitable for me?
Note the following:
- Medicine needs a high level of determination, consistency and constant practice of selflessness.
- Doctors continue to learn even after becoming certified. There is the need to gain new skills, acquire updated information and evolve with evolving technologies.
- A doctor needs to be flexible and have the ability to switch from one specialization to another, within the health sector.
- A health care specialist has to be able to communicate effectively and work successfully within a group.
- Doctors have to lead positive and influential lives.
With this background, it becomes clear that natural talents or interests, combined with the opportunities available in the field are not enough, you also have consider the demands and tasks involved in having a successful medical career.
Consider these too:
- Try to understand yourself– your passion, aims, aspirations and values are crucial things to bear in mind. These mindsets can help in having a clear view of how successful you can become in the medical sector.
- Carryout informal researches– it is very important to spend sufficient time in understanding how the life of a typical doctor is, organize meetups with practicing doctors and seize the opportunity to conduct detailed interviews. It is also helpful to: know the workforce statistics of medical doctors and surgeons, be conversant with all the educational and training processes in the field and understand fundamental requirements during the application stage.
- Be aware of plausible expenses – On the average, medical students spend about one hundred thousand dollars during their entire studies and it does not seem that tuition fees will be reduced at any point. However, these expenses are easily forgotten once practicing begins. That is, barring the rigors and challenges, the career is largely rewarding, monetarily.
- Be prepared for challenges– School administrators are widely known to prefer medical students that are able to withstand cumbersome workloads as well as bulky course works. Generally, the volume of books that are used at the early stages of pre-clinical classes are significantly more than those needed at the undergraduate level. Again, in the clinical years, medical students are tasked psychologically through lengthy hours of interaction with patients. They are equally tasked physically by making them remain standing for many hours, while working tirelessly. Therefore, determination and motivation are very important for any prospective medical doctor.
Having considered all these aforementioned factors, if there are traces of doubts in your pursuit of a medical career, you should understand that not everyone would become a medical doctor. In fact, there are a good number of related careers to look into.
Furthermore, choosing this field as a career due to the financial gains may lead to grave disappointments as these gains come along with consistent hard work and dogged passion to help improve health and save lives.
Interestingly, you can decide to switch courses even after two years of studies in the field. Almost all colleges give room for this. It also means that the first two years can serve as the decision making period.
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Also read: Career Specializations in Medical Sciences and Educational and Licensing Demands for Medical Doctors for an all-inclusive insight on Medicine as a career.