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Career as Surgeon

Career as a Surgeon

About Surgeon

A doctor that specializes in surgery is known as a surgeon. They perform operations on patients suffering from diseases, injuries or deformities. One can train to become either a general surgeon or choose any specialization such as orthopedic, neurological, plastic surgery or cardiovascular. The surgeon has an entire team assisting him in the operating room, the team takes care of the preparation and monitoring tasks so that the surgeon can focus on operating. Apart from having an in-depth medical knowledge, the other skills that a surgeon requires are dexterity, precision and stamina. Some procedures can be really tedious and require long hours.

Eligibility to become Surgeon

If you aspire to be a surgeon, you will have to get an MBBS degree from any university recognized by the MCI. Post that, an MS degree in General Surgery is required to practice as a surgeon. To further get any specialization, one needs M.ch degree from any institute approved by the MCI. M.Ch is Master of Chirurgical and is a super specialty course in surgery. It has a duration of 3 years and M.Ch candidates also take part in surgical procedures and all candidates pursuing M.Ch work as full-time residents during the training period. It can be pursued in any subject such as plastic surgery, cardiothoracic, urology etc.

Basic Eligibility Criteria

  • To pursue MBBS, you need to pass 10+2 with at least 60 percent in Physics, Chemistry, and Biology. After that, you have to appear for NEET, which is the most important entrance exam. Other universities such as JIPMER and AIIMS conduct their own entrance exams. After clearing NEET, you will get a college as per your ranking.
  • You can pursue MS General Surgery after completing MBBS and at least a year of internship. Duration of MS is 3 years.

Entrance Exams

Some of the entrance exams for MS are as follows:


Types of Job Roles Surgeon

There are various specialties within surgery that you can pursue as per your interest. Let’s take a look at the different surgeon job profiles:

Cardiothoracic Surgery-This type of surgery involves dealing with diseases of the heart, esophagus, chest, and lungs. It includes cardiac surgery (heart and vessels), transplantation and heart failure surgery, congenital surgery, thoracic surgery (organs within the chest, excluding the heart), and esophageal surgery.

Neurosurgery-This involves dealing with all aspects of the brain surgery such as pediatric neurosurgery, skull base surgery, spinal surgery and a host of other neurological ailments.

Oral and maxillofacial surgery-This includes surgery of the face and neck. The procedures involve minor surgery to complex head and neck surgeries, correcting facial deformity and facial trauma management.

Orthopedic surgery-This deals with bones, joints and soft tissues such which include nerves, muscles, and ligaments. Involves fractures, hip or knee surgery, ankle, and foot, rheumatoid and sports surgery.

General surgery-This includes many sub-specialties such as colorectal, breast, endocrine, upper and lower gastrointestinal, kidney and liver transplant and vascular surgery.

Pediatric surgery-These surgeons handle problems that require surgical intervention in children, right from the newborn till the teenage years.

Urology-Urological conditions that involve dealing with the urogenital system (bladder, kidney, urethra, and ureters) come under this type of surgical specialization.

Vascular surgery-This type of surgery deals with the diagnosis and management of diseases associated with the veins and arteries. Some common surgical procedures are lower limb bypass surgery and angioplasty.

Obstetrics and Gynecology-Obstetrics and gynecology surgery involve taking care of the pregnant patients, delivering babies and offering surgical and medical care for treating conditions affecting the female reproductive system.

Employment Opportunities for Surgeons

Surgeons can choose to work in a variety of work settings. They can find employment opportunities in the following places:

  • Government hospitals
  • Private and multispecialty hospitals
  • Visiting surgeon at various hospitals

Top Recruiting Companies for Surgeons

There are many private as well as government hospitals where surgeons can choose to work. Some of them are:

  • Fortis Bangalore
  • Fortis Escorts Heart Institute
  • Apollo Hospitals Group
  • Narayana Health
  • Jaypee Hospital, Noida
  • Max Healthcare and Super-Specialty Hospitals
  • Sri Ramakrishna Multi-Specialty Hospital

Planning to choose Surgeon as your career?

Pay Scale/Salary of Surgeon

The salary of an entry-level surgeon is roughly around Rs. 9, 71,000. A mid-career surgeon with 5-10 years of work experience can earn approx. Rs. 11, 71,000 whereas an experienced general surgeon can expect approx. Rs. 24, 63,000. A surgeon with more than 20 years of experience can earn roughly Rs.33, 00,000.Note:

Note: The above figures are an estimate and may vary from individual to individual and company to company.

Books & Study Material to Become Surgeon

To gain more knowledge regarding the field of surgery, there are certain books and study material that you can refer to. Let’s take a look at some of the best books that can prove beneficial for you:

  • Bailey and Love’s Short Practice of Surgery
  • Maniple Manual of Surgery
  • A manual on Clinical Surgery by Soda’s
  • Pie’s Surgical Handicraft

Pros of becoming a Surgeon

Life of a surgeon can be tough, challenging and gratifying at the same time. Career as a surgeon is rewarding but also has a few drawbacks. Weigh both the pros and cons and do research as you should know what you are getting into. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of being a surgeon:


Despite a stressful job, surgeons are still paid very well. Surgeons in large private hospitals often get paid more because of the number of surgeries.


Surgeons have the option of getting a flexible working as a general surgeon or in any area of specialization as per their choice. They can also choose to work with just children or focus on the elderly.

Job Satisfaction

A surgeon’s job can be extremely rewarding as a surgeon gets to make a difference in people’s lives by saving their lives. The technical knowledge and the skills of a surgeon in the operating room have a visible impact on a patient’s health.


Cons of becoming a Surgeon


As a surgeon, you are responsible for a patient’s life and any mistake can kill your patient. This responsibility can be a lot for some surgeons and they have to work long hours. The physical and emotional requirements of this job can take a toll on one’s health.

Impact on Social life

You’ll have to be consistently on call at times, which may not give you enough time for your personal and social commitments.


Surgeons are usually burdened with work and have to check on patients, perform surgeries, attend meetings and they have paperwork to do. At times, they may also have additional responsibilities such as training new doctors and doing research. This can lead to burnout and lack of motivation and enthusiasm regarding their work.

Paths for Being Surgeon

FAQs about Surgeon

I am pursuing M.B.B.S. (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery) to become a Surgeon. What other career options do I have ?

You could become a Psychiatrist , a Paediatrician , a Physician , a Doctor after studying M.B.B.S. (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery).

Confused on what to choose as your career?