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Surgeon Job Description, Career as a Surgeon, Salary, Employment - Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

income surgeons patients medical hospitals

Education and Training: College, medical school, and specialized training

Salary: Median—$282,504 per year

Employment Outlook: Very good

Definition and Nature of the Work

Surgeons are physicians who operate to repair injuries, correct deformities, prevent diseases, and generally improve the health of patients. They examine patients to determine if surgery is necessary, evaluate the risks involved, and select the appropriate surgical procedure.

General surgeons perform many kinds of operations. Others specialize in one type of operation or one system or area of the body. Neurosurgeons, for example, operate on the brain, spinal cord, and nervous system, while thoracic surgeons operate on lungs and other organs in the chest cavity. Diseases of bones and joints, such as arthritis, as well as the treatment of broken bones, are the focus of orthopedic surgeons.

Education and Training Requirements

Medical schools require applicants to have bachelor's degrees, usually with majors in a science, such as chemistry or biology. They look for well-rounded students, so other courses and activities are important. Most medical colleges have four-year programs that lead to doctor of medicine (MD) degrees. A few medical schools offer combined undergraduate and medical school programs that last six rather than eight years. In all cases, medical school is followed by internships and residencies—on-the-job training at hospitals. Surgical residency programs generally last five years. Surgeons must also take licensing examinations and earn board certification in their areas of specialization.

Individuals who want to be surgeons must be self-motivated and have the physical and mental stamina to handle the pressure and long hours of medical education. Surgeons continue studying throughout their careers to keep current in their fields.

Getting the Job

Beginning surgeons may enter private practice or group practice, with affiliations with one or more hospitals. Some surgeons choose to work for the federal government in veterans' hospitals or the military. College placement offices can be helpful in finding positions. Surgeons also make contacts during their internships and residencies that may lead to employment.

Advancement Possibilities and Employment Outlook

Surgeons advance by gaining more skill and knowledge and by increasing their number of patients. General surgeons may move into areas of specialty. In some large urban hospitals, surgeons become heads of surgery departments. With additional education and training, surgeons may also teach or do research.

Employment of surgeons is projected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2014, largely because the health-care industry is expected to expand. The growing and aging population should spur overall growth. Also, new technologies permit more tests and more procedures for conditions that were once untreatable. Competition may be stiff for specialists in urban and suburban areas, which are attractive to surgeons because of higher earning potential and continued contact with colleagues.

Surgeons are medical specialists who operate on patients to repair injuries, correct deformities, prevent diseases, and generally improve the health of patients. (© Helen King/Corbis.)

Working Conditions

Surgeons work long hours, mostly at hospitals where they operate on patients or visit pre- or postsurgery patients. Surgeons frequently perform emergency operations. Most surgeons maintain offices outside hospitals where they explain procedures to their patients.

Earnings and Benefits

The income of surgeons varies according to specialty, geographic location, years in practice, and reputation. In 2004 the median salary for general surgeons was $282,504 per year.

Where to Go for More Information

Association of American Physicians and Surgeons
1601 N. Tucson Blvd., Ste. 9
Tucson, AZ 85716
(800) 635-1196
http://www.aapsonline.org

American College of Surgeons
Division of Education
633 N. Saint Clair St.
Chicago, IL 60611-3211
(800) 621-4111
http://www.facs.org

Self-employed surgeons arrange their own benefits. For those who are not self-employed, benefits generally include paid holidays and vacations, health insurance, and retirement plans.

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almost 9 years ago

This is a great website it helped alot with my paper THANKSā™„

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over 6 years ago

What are the benefits, such as health and medical benefits, also what are the tax benefits of being a surgeon?

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over 6 years ago

Surgeon Job Description, Career as a Surgeon, Salary, Employment - Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

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over 6 years ago

Hi, I am a student from Miami Southridge senior High school. I am doing a research project about career choices so i need the help of a general surgeon to do my appendix for the research. If possible i would like one of those person to help me.

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almost 6 years ago

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over 9 years ago

what are surgeons health benefits

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almost 6 years ago

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over 9 years ago

this made my business class report wayyy easier..thanks

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over 6 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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over 5 years ago

who is the author of this article

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over 4 years ago

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about 5 years ago

I got brains from alex

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over 9 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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over 8 years ago

Thank You! This page helped me a lot!

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almost 9 years ago

This site helped me with my science project.

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almost 8 years ago

what tools do surgeons use

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almost 7 years ago

is being a surgeon worth it? would you have time for your family and would you be able to live good off of the salary?

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almost 9 years ago

this site helped me with a career project, Thanks!

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over 6 years ago

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over 6 years ago

What's the level of education that's required for this occupation?. And what programs are efficient for beginers?.

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over 6 years ago

is it hard ?

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almost 4 years ago

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almost 9 years ago

thanks to this site i passed 8th grade!!!

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almost 9 years ago

I have a school project on our future jobs and this covered basically everything I needed to know about this profession.

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over 6 years ago

thanks for this page really thanks because with this page i did correctly my powerpoint...

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almost 9 years ago

thanks soooooo much



helped wit a career project

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about 9 years ago

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about 9 years ago

*thanks god for this site*

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over 7 years ago

how much do you make during surgecial internship and residenicies

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over 7 years ago

How much do you make your first year being a surgeon? How many years of school do you need? And what is the best school for becoming a surgeon?

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almost 8 years ago

What types of writing are there in a surgeons career?

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over 6 years ago

is it hard ?

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over 6 years ago

well i am inly in jr. high and so all this really does make since to me.I would like to be a surgeon and i hae always wanted to help sick people in my life and so now i have a good chance:)

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almost 5 years ago

this website help me with my project in Intro to health science

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about 5 years ago

I got brains from alex

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over 9 years ago

This is a great website

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over 9 years ago

I am thinking about becoming a surgeon, and this site really helped me to gather information. It totally supports my needs. Thanks.

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almost 9 years ago

This website helped me so much on my research paper. I gave me a ton of info about surgeons!!!

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over 6 years ago

You should have more information on about...................... everything

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almost 9 years ago

this helped me pass my career project for reading and english. you saved my life

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almost 9 years ago

This site helped a lot with my paper for English. I had to have 3 sources of info in 2 days, and this one is my 3 site, so thanks!!!

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almost 9 years ago

this is a totaly rockn site!! it helpd me alot on my research paper in health!!

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over 6 years ago

what are the health benifits for a surgeon?

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over 6 years ago

this website is really helpfull thans alot you rock suergoens.

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over 7 years ago

What type of training do you need to do before you are surgeon

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almost 4 years ago

i dislike school

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over 4 years ago

this website is the worst!! it didnt answer any of my questions about surgeons!!!!!!

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over 4 years ago

this helped a little bt . i think this websight could use a little more on the earnings & benifits . but other then that , it was good .

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almost 9 years ago

I have a school project on this to, had no idea this website had so much info, thank goodness for google, this was a HUGE help :)

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almost 5 years ago

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over 6 years ago

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almost 9 years ago

this site helped alot. thanks for putting the citation. saved a lot of hassle there!!!

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over 6 years ago

is it hard ?

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over 5 years ago

is being a surgent worth it? whjo is the Arthur of this article. what are the benifits such as health and medical benifts also is you thankful for your job know today if you didn't retire bye thans for letting me write something to you

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over 6 years ago

thanks this page help me alot,and what kind of collegs give the degree u have right now?

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about 9 years ago

THANK YOU VERY MUCH. VERY GOOD INFORMATION. BUT WOULD YOU ADD WHTAT THE SKILLS REQUIRED TO SUCCESS IN THIS OCCUPATION

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over 6 years ago

Will thos job be easy?

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over 6 years ago

I want to become a brain surgeon do u have any tips

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about 5 years ago

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over 5 years ago

DERP

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over 6 years ago

This came in handy

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over 9 years ago

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over 9 years ago

this site is better than the site that my professor gave the class to study with.

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over 9 years ago

WOW THIS IS A HELPFUL WEBSITE FOR ANY BODY WHO WANTS TO GET A WELL EXPLANATION OF THIS AWESOME CAREER

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over 9 years ago

Surgeons rule

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over 9 years ago

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over 9 years ago

Thankyou for this website. It helped me alot with what i needed. I appreciat it greatly.

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over 9 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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about 9 years ago

Could you tell the skills that one needs into succeding in this great career

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about 9 years ago

A good insight for someone one who wants to know how this career is now and in the near future. If possible, can you go more in depth in the types of surgeons. Thank you.

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over 9 years ago

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I'm going to become the number 1 surgeon in America or even the world!!!!!!!!!!!!

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over 9 years ago

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almost 10 years ago

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almost 9 years ago

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almost 9 years ago

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almost 6 years ago

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almost 6 years ago

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about 6 years ago

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over 9 years ago

This was a helpful site for me doing a project.

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over 6 years ago

so in college? what is the name of this field? I don't know what to fill out on applications because I don't even know what this is called. I don't even know what the field name is for regular general doctors.

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about 9 years ago

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about 9 years ago

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over 9 years ago

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almost 10 years ago

this site saved my life when i had to do a job subject for health

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over 9 years ago

I can't seem to find what i'm looking for... DO surgeons get retirement plans, insurance or any OTHER benefits other than money??

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almost 5 years ago

i just got an A thanks

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almost 5 years ago

what do i need to do while im in high school and when im out to make me sussesful in getting my career

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almost 5 years ago

what do i need to do while im in high school and when im out to make me sussesful in getting my career

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almost 5 years ago

what do i need to do while im in high school and when im out to make me sussesful in getting my career

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almost 5 years ago

what do i need to do while im in high school and when im out to make me sussesful in getting my career

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over 5 years ago

this website helped me a lot on my project but i consider that you add a little more info so that we know what surgeons are from inside out. just like the guy before me he mentioned if it was hard to do the job

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about 5 years ago

I have a really big penis. i want to become a surgeon so i can do surgery on my penis to make it bigger. is this possible?

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over 5 years ago

its not enough imformation need to expane it more

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about 5 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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about 5 years ago

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over 5 years ago

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over 5 years ago

Do you know the author of this article? I need it for my paper.

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over 5 years ago

Thank you so much I'm doing a research paper and this helped me a lot.

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over 5 years ago

Thanks a lot for the information!!!

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over 4 years ago

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over 4 years ago

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about 5 years ago

I like the brown pum tastes like milk chocolate, if she has a bush its just a bonus im a jungle boy

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almost 6 years ago

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almost 6 years ago

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3 months ago

HELPFUL!

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over 1 year ago

This helped me pass the grader for my career project

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almost 4 years ago

im tired

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over 4 years ago

Hi. were doing this research paper and we got to pick what we wanted and were supose to ask 5 questions to a surgeon but i dont know any. could you help me please?

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over 4 years ago

Thank you this is an AWESOME website it helped alot with my career project! :)

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over 4 years ago

Yuuuuuhhh, nice info broeee... Thanks!! (:

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over 4 years ago

i am very interested in bieng a surgeon i would realy love to learn more especially about neurosurgeon

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over 4 years ago

i am very interested in bieng a surgeon i would realy love to learn more especially about neurosurgeon