The field of obstetrics and gynecology. You either hate it or love it and there usually is no in between.
I hear it from medical student students all the time. They get to deliver their first baby, or scrub on their first C-section or hysterectomy or counsel a woman in the office and realize that wow, this is a really cool specialty.
OB GYN is the perfect combination of primary care, women’s health, surgery and continuity of care. We get to follow women through every stage of their lives and I have worked with attendings who are taking care of three generations of women. There is nothing quite like it.
This is mostly a happy specialty. Yes there are some discouraging things that happen in this field but overall we take care of young, healthy patients with no medical problems and help them bring little lives into the world everyday! There is nothing that makes me more happy than delivering cute little nuggets!
You get to take care of women during very vulnerable times of their lives. This specialty is so personal. We help women have babies, give them contraception to keep them from having babies, diagnose cancer, STD’s, counsel women through infertility and so much more. Women trust us to keep their secrets. They trust us to make the best decisions for them when they don’t know what next step to take. They trust us with things that they cannot tell their best friend. There is something amazing in that and something I do not take for granted.
4. Fixer upper
You get to fix things! As surgeons we are fixers. If a woman is bleeding there are many surgeries we can do to stop it. If there is a mass we remove it. This job is so fulfilling because there is immediate gratification after we perform surgeries.
We are advocates for women’s health. We are in a time where the laws and decisions being made are not always made by women or in the best interest of women. This field allows you to do research in women’s health and to join advocacy groups to actually have a voice in the decisions that immediately affect women.
No one talks money but that’s important right? You get in a lot of debt and invest lots of time in schooling. The average OB GYN comes out of residency making between $200,000-$250,000. Of course this varies depending on location and can be more if you are willing to practice in rural areas. This amount will only increase with experience and depending on how many patients you see and how many surgeries you perform. This is a great starting salary for a newly graduating residents and gives us something to look forward to after graduating.
7. Job security
There is a great need for OB GYNs and the need is growing every day. There are many areas in the country that do not have access to women’s healthcare and it is motivating that I am joining forces with a specialty that is ever growing and will continue to provide for the needs of women in many years to come.
8. Ability to specialize
As the specialty of OB GYN grows so do the subspecialities. There is maternal fetal medicine where you can do an additional three years and focus on women with high risk pregnancies. There is reproductive endocrinology and infertility where you work with women who have a difficult time conceiving on their own. There is gynecological oncology where you specialize in surgeries for female cancers. And last but not least is Urogynecology/Pelvic Reconstructive surgery where they focus on incontinence and pelvic reconstruction procedures. There are so many different avenues in this speciality that are not available in other specialties.
It’s never just a “regular” day at the office
Sometimes office days can be mundane and boring. But not in our specialty! There are so many office procedures we perform such as placing Mirenas and Nexplanons, performing Pap smears, endometrial biopsies, colposcopies and more. This gives great balance in the office and always keeps us on our toes. Most of us who chose this specialty did so because we like excitement and variety and OB GYN provides this everyday.
10. WE GET TO DELIVER BABIES
Duh! I mean there are few things that compare and almost halfway into my third year I still stand by the fact that delivering babies never gets old! The look on the mom’s face, the dad’s face, holding a newborn and knowing that you just became an integral part of this family’s life is simply amazing.
Hope this helps especially for the medical students! Please email any questions!