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    Master of Chirurgiae

    MCh Overview

    Master of Chirurgiae, also known as MCh, is the highest degree in the field of surgical science. It is a three-year course after MD or MS and a five-year course after MBBS where medical students attain mastery over surgery. The Latin term for MCh is Magister Chirugiae after completion of which one can be a surgeon. The course is known for its competitiveness and only a handful of students get the opportunity to pursue it. 

    There are numerous specializations offered by the MCh degree — the top ones are plastic surgery, ENT, urology, neurosurgery, pediatric surgery, and cardiac surgery. MCh course aspirants must secure at least 55% in MBBS to be eligible to appear for the entrance examination NEET-SS. 

    The course involves deep and advanced knowledge of surgery and a practical understanding of dealing with complex surgical procedures. Candidates are trained in highly specialized areas of surgery. The top medical colleges of MCh are AIIMS, PGIMER, JPIMER, Christian Medical College, and Kasturba Medical College.

    The MCh course costs around INR 4,000 to 20 lakh per year in India. Upon graduation, students get to work in prominent employment settings such as ICUs, emergency, operation theatres, trauma centers, and others. The average annual salary earned by MCh specialists in the country can range from INR 8 to 20 lakh.

    MCh Course Highlights

    A brief overview of MCh is given in the table mentioned below:

    Name of the Course

    MCh

    Full Form

    Master of Chirurgiae

    Stream

    Medical

    Degree Level

    Postgraduation/Doctoral

    Course Mode

    Regular 

    Course Duration

    3 or 5 years

    Qualification Required

    MBBS/MD/MS degree

    Exam Type

    Semester-based

    Admission Process

    Entrance-based

    Fees Range

    INR 4,000-20 lakh

    Career Prospects

    Neuro Surgeon, Urology Surgeon, Cardiac Surgeon, Paediatric Surgeon, etc.

    About MCh Course

    The MCh degree is heavily research-oriented. Students need to work in an extremely challenging and high-pressure environment. The course combines theoretical and practical training, seminars, and thesis or projects after which one becomes proficient in the surgical field.

    Surgeons are provided with in-depth knowledge of the latest advancements in surgical and biomedical techniques. Those who aspire to be an MCh must have skills such as leadership, academic excellence, and skills to thrive in the professional field.  The areas that are included in an MCh course are:

    • Evidence-based practice in surgery
    • Advanced understanding of service innovation process in the relevant subject area
    • Quantitative and qualitative methods of research
    • Writing a research proposal
    • Investigative inquiry from conceptualization to completion.

    Difference Between MCh and MS

    Explicitly MS and MCh appear similar in the eyes of a layman. Therefore, to clear the confusion between the two degrees, a comprehensive overview is given below:

    Degrees

    MS

    MCh

    Full Form

    Master of Surgery

    Master of Chirurgiae (Latin: Magister Chirurgiae)

    Level

    Postgraduate Degree

    Doctoral or Post Doctoral Degree

    Duration

    3 years

    3 or 5 years

    Eligibility Criteria

    Must have completed MBBS

    Must have completed MBBS/MD/MS

    Why Choose MCh Courses?

    An MCh degree adds significant value to the resume of a medical professional and helps them emerge as the best in their profession. It requires huge efforts from candidates from giving the exam to securing the most coveted seats Though they have to pass several sleepless nights, the reasons that may motivate one to choose MCh courses are:

    • Aspirants can choose a wide variety of specializations and gain mastery in their profession. This would give them an edge over others.

    • It will train students as per the demands of the industry. The course will allow them to learn every complicated technical procedure in their field of surgery. 

    • It will help in research and innovations in surgical procedures and technologies.

    • MCh specialists can train juniors and students in their own domain thereby diversifying their career prospects.

    • One gets to be a part of the most rewarding profession by saving the lives of thousands.

    • The most promising part of the MCh degree is the salary. They tend to earn more than doctors with only MBBS degrees. 

    How Many Courses are there in MCh?

    There are more than 20 MCh specializations. Candidates have diverse specializations to choose from and must choose the best ones for themselves. The specializations decide the coursework, curriculum, and clinical structure. 

    Here is a list of top MCh specializations in India:

    • Cardiology: The course is targeted to train students in ailments related to the heart, chest, and lungs. It is a combination of two streams - cardiac and thoracic. Apart from surgery, students also learn to use various investigating and diagnostic procedures and understand test reports while treating patients.

    • Gastroenterology: This course is dedicated to training surgeons in gastrointestinal surgery covering the upper GI tract, lower GI tract, and HPB surgery. The trainees are also exposed to endoscopy, ultrasonography, and GI vascular interventions.

    • Endocrinology: A candidate opting for endocrinology develops skills and competencies in the management of surgical endocrine and breast disorders. They must be able to include genetic evaluation, functional imaging, and management of various disorders.  

    • Urology: The training in urology includes in-depth knowledge of the entire urology and relevant subjects. They will also be trained in pediatric and adult urology with knowledge of sub-specialties like gynecological urology, neuro-oncology, neuro-urology, and andrology.

    • Neurology: The course should help students with basic, investigative, clinical, and operative neurosciences. They will learn to perform neurosurgical operations and impart basic neurosurgical training.

    • Pediatrics: MCh candidates in pediatrics will get the competence and confidence to diagnose and manage infant and childhood surgeries. They will also gain a broad understanding of the principles of basic sciences related to their domain.

    Other MCh Specializations

    Apart from the above-mentioned MCh specializations, there are some other important specializations that students can refer to for further study:

    MCh Specialisations 

    Nephrology

    Trauma

    Orthopedic

    Neuroradiology

    Neuroanaesthesiology

    Neonatology

    Hematology

    Cardiacanaesthesiology

    Burns and Plastic Surgery

    Cardiothorasicvascular

    Histochemistry

    Applied Anatomy and Recent Advancements

    Reproductive Medicine

    Hepato Pancreato Biliary Surgery

    Genito Urinary Surgery

    Hand and Micro Surgery

    MCh Entrance Exams

    NEET-SS or National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (Super Speciality) is a single entrance examination taken for admission to various MCh courses as per section 61 (2) of the National Medical Commission Act, 2019.

    The National Board of Examination (NBE) conducts the NEET-SS exam. There is no other national, state, or institute-level exam valid for entry to MCh courses under most of the institutions and universities in India. The test is valid for almost all government and private medical colleges, universities and deemed universities, and armed forces medical service institutions.

    INI CET is another MCh entrance exam conducted by AIIMS or All India Institute of Medical Sciences. The INI CET full form is the Institute of National Importance Combined Entrance Test. From 2021, the scores of this exam are accepted for entry to MCh courses in 12 AIIMS institutes, PGIMER Chandigarh, JPIMER Puducherry, NIMHANS Bengaluru, and Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Trivandrum. 

    MCh Eligibility Criteria

    Similar to every medical course, the MCh course also has certain eligibility criteria that students must fulfill to become a specialist in the field. The common eligibility criteria are given below for easy reference before enrolling in the course:

    • Students have to complete MBBS or MD degree.

    • They are required to submit NEET-SS or INI-CET scores to be eligible for applying for MCh.

    • They must have completed their SMC/NMC registration.

    • Foreign medical candidates do not need registration under NMC.

    • Those who have MS qualifications need to provide proof of their license to the university. One also has to have an active part in an MS degree or receive an interim pass certificate.

    • Must have a valid identity card that includes Pan Card, Adhaar Card, Driving License, or Voter ID.

    Documents Required for MCH Courses

    The universities require candidates to submit certain documents to get admission to MCh courses. The document list is provided below:

    • MBBS/MS degree certificate

    • Admit card of entrance exam

    • NEET SS or INI-CET result card

    • NMC registration certificate

    • Valid ID proof

    How to Get Admission to MCh Courses?

    As MCh is a highly specialized course, students can only apply through the entrance examination. There is no provision for direct admission based on merit. The common steps to apply for MCh courses in India are:

    Step 1: Select medical colleges offering the specialization that the candidate is seeking.
    Step 2: Fill up the application form by visiting the university portal.
    Step 3: Submit all the documents required by the university.
    Step 4: Take the entrance test to get selected for the program.
    Step 5: Clear the cut-off of the particular specialization.
    Step 6: A merit list of qualified candidates will be prepared.
    Step 7: Complete the counseling process which includes registering on the official website of MCC, choice filling and locking, fee payment and application processing, and lastly provisional seat allotment. Complete rounds of counseling, as required. 
    Step 8: Finish the admission process by submitting other documents as mentioned.

    Popular MCh Colleges in India

    Aspirants get to choose the colleges based on their ranks in the entrance exam, the cut-off, and the availability of specialization in that particular college. The list of popular colleges is given below:

    College

    Location

    All India Institute of Medical Sciences

    New Delhi

    Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education & Research

    Chandigarh

    Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research

    Puducherry

    Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology

    Trivandrum 

    Christian Medical College

    Vellore

    Kasturba Medical College

    Manipal

    Armed Forces Medical College

    Pune

    Vydehi Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre

    Bangalore

    Maulana Azad Medical College

    New Delhi

    Dayanand Medical College and Hospital

    Ludhiana

    City-Wise Top Colleges for MCh in India

    Let us observe some of the top MCh colleges across popular cities in India:

    New Delhi

    New Delhi has some of the most renowned MCh colleges. They are:

    Bengaluru 

    The top colleges for MCh in Bengaluru are:

    • St Johns Medical College
    • MS Ramaiah Medical College
    • Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute
    • National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences
    • Raja Rajeshwari Medical College and Hospital
    • Indira Gandhi Institute of Child Health
    • Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences and Research

    Mumbai

    The medical colleges that provide MCh courses in Mumbai are given below:

    Kolkata

    Kolkata boasts the presence of some top medical colleges for MCh. Some of them are:

    Chennai

    The medical colleges in Chennai provide MCh courses to students. The most popular ones are:

    Study MCh Abroad

    Studying MCh abroad can enhance the academic and professional development of students interested in surgery and improving the safety of patients. Professional surgical training coupled with research outputs motivates them to continue their studies outside India. Some of the top MCh universities abroad are:

    Name of Medical College

    Country

    Flinders University

    Australia

    Royal College of Surgeons

    Ireland

    University of Galway

    Ireland

    University of New South Wales

    Australia

    University of Edinburgh

    United Kingdom

    University of Liverpool

    United Kingdom

    University of Auckland

    New Zealand

    Harvard University

    United States

    Texas A&M University

    United States

    MAHSA University

    Malaysia

    Dalhousie University

    Canada

    What is MCh Course Fee?

    The average tuition fees charged by government colleges for MCh courses are comparatively low whereas private colleges charge high fees for providing the same course. However, as the return on investment (ROI) is high, the course is worth the expenditure. The course fees of some of the top colleges are given below:

    Medical College

    Average Annual Fees (in INR)

    AIIMS

    3,000

    PGIMER

    4,000

    Christian Medical College

    2 lakh

    Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences 

    70,000

    Banaras Hindu University 

    15,000

    Kasturba Medical College

    20 lakh

    JIPMER

    4,000

    Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences

    70,000

    Sri Ramachandra Institute of Higher Education and Research

    20 lakh

    Maulana Azad Medical College

    20,000

    MCh Syllabus

    The MCh course is goal oriented and aims to train students to perform the following functions:

    • Recognize the needs of health of the community as relevant to the specialty and super specialty.

    • Carry out professional obligations effectively and efficiently supported by scientific knowledge and skill.

    • Master competencies related to specialty so as to deliver secondary and tertiary healthcare.

    • Awareness regarding contemporary advances and developments.

    • Be caring and empathetic towards patients and relatives and maintain ethical standards of treatment.

    • Be able to share knowledge and skills with juniors, colleagues, and learners. 

    The syllabus of some of the specializations is given here.

    Gastroenterology

    The course content contains the entire scope of surgical gastroenterology. Some of the important components of the gastroenterology syllabus are:

    Gastroenterology Syllabus

    Anatomical Details of Organs

    Endoscopic Ultrasound and Other Diagnostic Techniques

    Contrast Imaging and CT Scan 

    Physiology of Gastric Secretions

    Stomach Trauma

    Bile Physiology

    Liver Functions and Tests

    Liver Regeneration 

    Pancreatic Ductal Anomalies

    Mesenteric Cyst

    Splenic Functions

    Carcinoma of the Colon

    Endocrine Surgery

    The syllabus of Endocrine Surgery touches upon the following areas:

    Endocrine Surgery Syllabus

    Anatomy

    Embryology

    Thyroiditis

    Physiology 

    Lymph Node Dissection

    Conn’s Adenoma

    Gatrinoma

    Breast Hypertrophy

    GynecomastiaEtiology and treatment of congenital malformations

    VIPOMA

    Pediatric Surgery

    While MCh in Paediatric Surgery gives a broad understanding of basic sciences related to it, some of the topics in the syllabus are:

    Paediatric Surgery Syllabus

    Ethics

    Genetics

    Molecular Biology

    Embryology Growth and Development

    Fetal Medicine

    Respiratory Physiology as Applied to Children

    Growth and Development

    Neonatal Surgery

    Etiology and Treatment of Congenital Malformations

    Trauma in Children including Burns

    Malignancy in Childhood

    Pathology of Surgical Conditions of Childhood

    Urology

    The syllabus of Urology brings out the entire knowledge of urology and allied subjects. The important topics of this specialization include:

    Urology Syllabus

    Anatomy and Embryology of GU tracts, Adrenal and Retroperitoneum

    Applied Physiology and Biochemistry

    Investigative Urology

    Genito-Urinary Radiology and Imaging

    Male Infertility

    Andrology

    Sexual Dysfunction

    Urodynamics and Neurology

    Reconstructive Urology

    Obstructive Uropathy

    Renovascular Hypertension

    Laparoscopic Urologic Surgery

    Neuro Surgery

    The course content of Neuro Surgery is as follows:

    Neuro Surgery Syllabus

    Essentials of Clinical Neurology

    Surgical Neuropathology

    Performance and Interpretation of Neuroradiological Procedures

    Principles and Interpretations of Modern Investigations

    Familiarity with Various Types of Anaesthesia

    Knowledge of Recent Advances in Neurosurgical Technologies

    Performance of Common Neurosurgical Operations

    Pharmacology of Various Drugs

    MCh Course Curriculum

    The MCh course curriculum is designed to aid students to work at medical hospitals in India, treat and diagnose problems, start units of specializations and work effectively for national and international programs. The curriculum is directed towards students gaining:

    • Knowledge

    • Practical and Clinical Skills

    • Thesis Skills

    • Human Values

    • Ethical Practices

    • Communication Abilities, and

    • Training in Research Methodology

    A list of teaching-learning activities that a student has to undergo are:

    • PG Orientation: During the first year, a PG orientation program is conducted to help students sharpen their communication skills and inform them of research methodology, biostatistics, and writing a dissertation.

    • Journal Club: It is generally held once a week to make a checklist of the evaluated presentations and carry weightage for internal assessments.

    • Subject-Based Seminars: The seminars are supposed to be held once in two weeks. Candidates have to make a defined number of presentations in a year that get evaluated.

    • Ward Rounds: Ward rounds include service or teaching rounds. All students are supposed to attend the grand rounds that are conducted once a week.

    • Pre-Operative Sessions: Here students present clinical history, examination findings, imaging, and operative plans.

    • Teaching Activities: They must teach undergraduate students.

     Other activities apart from those mentioned above include:

    • Outpatient clinics teaching

    • Hands-on training in operation theatres

    • Seminars

    • Latest guidelines discussions

    • Case presentations

    • Case-based scenario

    • Debates

    • Online webinars

    • National and international conferences and presentations

    • Surgical videos

    MCh Scope in India - Career and Job Prospects

    MCh courses lead to a plethora of opportunities in professional fields and are therefore preferred by medical graduates. Some of the career and job prospects after completion of the course can be:

    • Students can apply for fellowship programs after completion of their MCh course. A brilliant academic profile helps in such cases.

    • There are several surgical practice opportunities in government and private hospitals in India. Graduates can also work as surgeons overseas.

    • They can also open a medical center or nursing home of their own and carry forward the legacy of learning.

    • The MCh graduates can also choose a teaching career as a professor of surgery and train future surgeons.

    • They can extend their expertise in research fields and contribute to the advancement of surgical technologies.

    Some of the popular job profiles after MCh are:

    • Neuro surgeon
    • Urology surgeon
    • General surgeon
    • Plastic surgeon 
    • Trauma surgeon

    Salary after MCh

    The lucrative career opportunities after MCh courses have been explained above. Students must also note that though the job requires them to take on huge responsibilities and challenges in day-to-day life, the salary structure makes it worth it and extremely rewarding. That said, the salary tends to vary according to specializations. The average salary of a few MCh professionals is discussed below:

    MCh Specialisations

    Average Annual Salary (in INR)

    Orthopedic Surgeon

    12 lakh

    Neonatal Surgeon

    15 lakh

    Urology Surgeon

    10 lakh

    Plastic Surgeon

    18 lakh

    Hematology Surgeon

    10-12 lakh

    Skills Required for MCh Graduates

    The personal attributes that make a good surgeon after MCh courses are knowledge coupled with good people skills. They have to handle several patients in a day and perform tough surgeries. The skills they require to work efficiently are: 

    • Caring Attitude: They must be caring towards the patients and treat them well so that the anxiety related to operations and surgeries is reduced.

    • Punctuality: They are entrusted with the responsibility of saving the lives of people and therefore they have to be on time on most occasions. Besides, they must be able to manage their time effectively to handle several cases at a time.

    • Ability to Cope with Stressful Situations: Surgeries are extremely stressful and one must know how to cope with stress and pressure. They must be cool-minded, trustworthy, and reliable.

    • Communication Skills: MCh graduates must be able to work in a team and maintain communication with other healthcare professionals and patients.

    FAQs about MCh

    Is entrance exam compulsory for MCh?

    Yes, it is compulsory to clear an entrance examination for MCh in India. Students will be selected based on the score secured in these exams. The entrance exams that students commonly take are NEET-SS and INI-CET. Apart from these two, there is no national, state or university-based entrance test for MCh.

    Can I pursue MCh after MBBS?

    Yes, you can pursue MCh after completing your MBBS degree. However, you must remember that the course will take a longer duration to complete after MBBS. Mostly those with MS degrees opt for MCh. It is up to your discretion to choose when you want to pursue the course.

    What is the course duration of MCh?

    The course duration of MCh is five years after MBBS and three years after MS. Students can choose to first complete MS and then go for a higher post-doctoral degree MCh. It is a post-doctoral degree that helps students to master the art of surgery.

    What can be done after MCh?

    Those who have completed MCh have diverse career options after completion. They can be recruited in government or private hospitals as doctors. They can also set up their own clinics to treat patients. Besides, those who wish to stay in the academic line can join colleges and teach students.

    Is MCh the same as MS?

    Both MCh and MS degree display some similarities which confuse students. However, one must note that students who have completed a bachelor's in surgery go for MS whereas an MCh degree can be pursued by all in any specialization. Also, while MS is a postgraduate degree, MCh is a doctoral or post-doctoral program.

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