A physician is another word for doctor, indicating a person who has a medical degree. Of course, doctors aren’t the only professionals working in the healthcare industry, but there are so many sub-specialties of physicians.
So if you want to pursue a career in the medical field, here are just a few of the many paths that you can take.
Age/Gender-Related Physician Specialties
One of the most obvious subspecialties in medicine is that of different age groups and genders. If you’re specializing in treating adults only, you’re usually referred to as an internal doctor. If you want to treat patients of all ages, you’ll be referred to as a family medicine doctor. However, if you’re looking to specialize in a different group of people, here are the subspecialties you’re looking for.
Gerontology is the study of old age, and geriatric physicians specialize in treating older patients, usually over the age of 65.
Gynecologists specialize in women’s reproductive health, and obstetricians specialize in pregnancy and childbirth.
Pediatricians diagnose and treat illnesses in children and adolescents, typically from birth to age 12, sometimes up until age 18.
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Creative Medical Careers
These aren’t the typical careers in healthcare that come to mind when thinking of the medical field. However, if you have a creative side as well as a scientific side, here are two medical careers that might interest you.
Medical photographers have the creative job of taking pictures of medical conditions and keeping track of them as time goes on. Some may even record videos of surgical procedures. This is one medical career that doesn’t require medical school— all you need is a degree in photography and a certificate in clinical photography.
Medical writing is another creative path to take in the medical field. Medical writers can be freelance or employed by a company, writing for medical magazines, journals, and even medical websites. To become a medical writer, you’ll need a Master’s degree and a background in technical writing and medicine— but you don’t have to attend medical school necessarily.
Internal Medicine Careers
Internists (doctors of internal medicine) specialize in treating illnesses that occur inside of the body— as opposed to doctors who treat illnesses outside of the body, such as dermatologists (skin doctors). Internists can be general practitioners, or they can specialize in a certain area. No matter what the specialty, all internal medicine doctors must attend and finish medical school, plus their residency in whatever subfield they choose to specialize in.
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Cardiologists diagnose and treat illnesses related to the cardiovascular system, which includes the heart, veins, and arteries.
Endocrinologists diagnose and treat illnesses related to the endocrine system, which is made up of a variety of organs: pancreas, adrenal glands, hypothalamus, pituitary gland, pineal gland, thyroid, and thymus. One of the most common illnesses treated by endocrinologists is diabetes.
Gastroenterologists diagnose and treat illnesses related to the gastrointestinal system, which comprises the mouth, pharynx, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum, and anus, plus the gallbladder, liver, and pancreas.
Hematologists diagnose and treat the disease of the blood, bone marrow, and lymphatic system. They work closely with oncologists, and some hematologists are also trained in oncology.
Oncologists diagnose and treat both benign and malignant tumors in the body. They work closely with hematologists, and some oncologists are also trained in hematology.
Rheumatologists diagnose and treat diseases related to the muscles, joints, and connective tissues, such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. They also diagnose and treat autoimmune diseases such as lupus, multiple sclerosis, and systemic sclerosis. Because of this, many types of healthcare facilities employ rheumatologists.
Other Careers in Medicine/Healthcare
Again, healthcare and medicine are very broad fields, so the specialties are almost endless. Here are a few more examples of careers in healthcare that are different from the ones listed above.
Dieticians are medical professionals that specialize in nutrition, science, and human behavior. They help their patients come up with specific diets for a variety of reasons, usually due to an illness.
Nurses are medical professionals that deliver specialized and expert care to patients in doctor’s offices, hospitals, and other clinical settings. There are different types of nurses and different specializations within nursing, just like there are with physicians.
Physicians trained in sports medicine focus on physical fitness and treating/preventing injuries related to sports and exercise.
As you can see, there are many diverse paths you can take in the medical field, and these are just a few. Not all of these paths require medical school if the thought of being in school for a long time is what’s keeping you from pursuing a career in health.