7 reasons not to do surgery
Don't consider a career in surgery if:
- If you are not seeking to make real change in someone who maybe critically ill
- If you don't want an exciting life style in the most productive field of medicine.
- If you don't thrive on 'adrenalin rush'.
- If you don't want to be at the forefront of technology
- If you don't wish to have an exciting career which will drive you to get better and better
- If you don't wish to have previlaged access inside someone, which is not something many people can do!!
- If you can't handle envy from your colleagues!!
I still remember the days when I walked into the operating theatre, as a second year medical student, for the very first time. I was really excited to see the abdomen open and see a small bowl resection for typhoid perforation, in a young, but very sick patient. Seeing her improving over the next days and watching the surgery gave me a real buzz.
At this point, I was still very much leaning towards a career in cardiology and hadn't decided on surgery-yet.
Then as a houseman, my consultant took me through several surgical procedures and much to my surprise, I was good with my hands and the sight of blood etc did not bother me. By the end of my 'foundation year', I had realised that I couldn't see myself doing anything else for the rest of my life.
I've come to realise how lucky I am to be paid to do something I really enjoy doing; carrying out or assisting in any surgical procedure in any capacity. Now that's not to say it's a smooth ride all the time and there are occasions when, the whole world seems to be against you, but the surgical training toughens you and prepares you to face all the eventualities.
Laparoscopic surgery when introduced 3 decades ago was a huge milestone in most surgical fields, but to topple it, now we are entering an era of robotic surgery. The future is really exciting. If I could relive my life again, I would have no regrets in applying for a career in general surgery again.
Mr Ravi Kumar
General and colorectal surgeon