How would you like to be a doctor or surgeon? Do you want to be a specialist doctor who treats illnesses concerning the ear, neck, and throat through general medicines or surgery? You can also be among the highest paid doctors! Explore to find what ENT Consultants and Head Neck Surgeons do, how they do it and how to become one.
ENT Consultants or Head and Neck Surgeons deal with treatment of diseases, infections, injuries, and defects concerning regions around or within ears, nose, throat, face, voice box, forehead, the area above the top of the cervical spineand related structures of the head and neck, through medications or surgeries. They are special doctors who are also known as otolaryngologists, ENT surgeons, ENT doctors or otorhinolaryngologists.
Why become an ENT Consultant or Head & Neck Suergon?
As an ENT Consultant or Head and Neck Surgeon, you will be dealing with treatment of diseases, infections, injuries, and defects concerning regions around or within ears, nose, throat, face, voice box, forehead, the area above the top of the cervical spineand related structures of the head and neck, through medications or surgeries. They are special doctors who are also known as otolaryngologists, ENT surgeons, ENT doctors or otorhinolaryngologists.
You will have to handle issues related to larynx (voice box), sinuses, upper pharynx (mouth and throat), oral cavity, as well as structures of the neck and face in both children and adults.You may also deal with surgical management of cancers and benign (non-cancer) tumors (mass of unwanted cells) of the head and neck if you specialize in oncologic surgery after your graduation.
This field of Otorhinolaryngology (ear, nose and throat) is one of the most competitive specialties in the medical space. Doctors / Surgeons specialized in otolaryngology are also among the highest paid.
Popular Specialization in this Career
Here are some of the specializations in Career as an ENT Consultant or Head and Neck Surgeon
- Otolaryngologists are commonly called ENT consultants. They are medical practitioners who are specialized in treating diseases associated with ears, nose and throat.
- Pediatric Otolaryngologist: This branch of Otolaryngology deals with children and their diseases(like ear infection, cleft lip correction, hearing problems, cochlear implant etc.) associated with ears, nose, throat, face, voice box and the area above the top of the cervical spine. It applies to patients in the age range of birth till 18 years. Otolaryngologists specialized in Pediatric Otolaryngology usually need to complete their post graduation. They usually also go for additional courses like Diploma in child health (DCH).
- Head and Neck Surgeons perform surgeries concerning the regions around or within ears, nose, throat,face, voice box,forehead, and the area above the top of the cervical spine. They have to complete their post graduation degrees before practicing. Some may specialize in oncologic (cancer related) cases too.
- Otologist/Neurotologist: The branch of clinical medicine dealing with neurological disorders of the ear is called Neuro-otology or Neurotology. Doctors handling such cases are called Neurotogists. They are also essentially surgeons and are trained in handling surgical cases too. They have to complete their post graduation degrees before practicing.
- Rhinologist/Sinus Surgeon: Rhinologiststreat nasal problems that include sinuses, sleep apnea, snoring, allergy, diseases in the nasal passageway, and chronic sinusitis. Sinus surgeons specialize in endoscopic or laparoscopic surgeries concerning sinuses.
- Maxillofacial Surgeons are those who specialize in facial reconstructive and plastic surgery. They deal with treatment of injuries, diseases, and defects in the head, jaws, face, neck and the hard or soft tissues of the maxillofacial (jaws and face) and oral (mouth) regions. This is a globally recognized specialty in the surgery segment.
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What does an ENT Consultant or Head and Neck Surgeon do?
As an ENT Consultant or Head and Neck Surgeon, you will be engaged with one or more of the following roles and responsibilities: –
- You will be examining a patient for obtaining information on medical / physical conditions, history, personal choices, and tendencies to ascertain necessary medical attention or associated surgical procedures.
- You will be diagnosing bodily disorders and clinical conditions and suggest therapeutic treatments, such as medicines or necessary surgeries, in hospital wards, clinics, or operating rooms.
- You will be conferring with other medical professionals for determining nature of treatment required or to obtain historical data to construct a patient’s medical portfolio and plan further treatment.
- You will be involved in recording patient’s condition or progress throughout the tenure of your treatment sessions, writing reports and maintaining proper registers containing patient information(case histories) or assist your personal clinic attendants to do the same.
- You will be providing consultation and surgical assistance to other surgeons and physicians as and when required.
- You will be directing and coordinating activities of assistants, residents, nurses, specialists, and other medical staffas and when required.
- You will be managing surgery services, including planning, arranging, scheduling and coordinating processes, or procuring of equipment and supplies.
- You will be involved in conducting research regarding new technologies, surgical techniques, instruments and surgical supplies that can improve diagnostic standards as well as operating procedures and outcomes.
How to become an ENT Consultant or Head & Neck Surgeon – Educational Requirement
After Class 11-12, you can go for your Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery course (MBBS).
After your graduation, you can go for a Post Graduate level program like MS (ENT), DNB.
DNB is considered equivalent to MS. The only difference is for MD and MS you will be trained in medical colleges with hundreds of patients and for DNB you will be trained in big private hospitals with much lesser number of patients.
If you are interested in higher qualifications, you can go for FNB, M. Ch.
You can find work as an ENT Specialist, Consultant ENT, Head and Neck Surgeon, Oncologic Surgeon, Rhinologist, Otologist, Maxillofacial Surgeon etc. in various government and private hospitals,nursing homes, institutions, medical colleges, medical aid industry, quarternary sector (research based industrial jobs in the healthcare segment) etc.
You can also set up your personal clinic to practice as an independent Otolaryngologist or ENT Specialist helping people treat disease, defects, infections, injuries etc. associated with ears, nose, throat, face, voice box and the area above the top of the cervical spine etc.
Salary of an ENT Consultant or Head & Neck Surgeon
In the entry-level jobs: you may expect about 70,000.00 – Rs.90,000.00 or more per month.
After having 1-6 years of experience, you may expect about Rs. 80,000 – Rs. 1,10, 000 per month or more.
After having 6-12 years of experience, you may expect about Rs. 1,20,000.00 – Rs. 2,00,000 per month or more.
In the senior level jobs, with 13+ years of work experience, you may expect to get about Rs. 2,00,000 – Rs. 12,00,000 per month or even more depending upon your position and the company you are working with.
Career Growth in this Profession
From entry-level positions, you may progress to be Senior Consulting Medical Officer, Resident Medical Officer, Senior ENT Surgeon or Chief / Head of Department, Chairman, Director etc.
If you are in the Academia, you may progress to become a full-time professor and later a Senior Lecturer or the Head of the Department in various universities.
You may also write books related to Otolaryngology and on allied topics addressing frequently asked questions of families or patients in general.
What does industry trends say – Future Prospects
The road ahead for this career pathway seems uphill.The Healthcare Market in India has a potential to increase 3 fold to 133.44 billion US Dollars by 2022. Indian Government is willing to expand public health spending to 2.5% of GDP by 2025. Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) launched in 2018 provides 7,124.54 US Dollars each to over 100 million families every year.
The Healthcare Industry in India is one of the fastest growing sectors and it is expected to reach $280 billion by 2020. The major focus is on quality of service and hence skilled labor is much required to sustain growth of this industry. The Services Sector (including community, social and personal services) is the key economic growth driver in India. It is the dominant sector in India’s GDP, has also attracted significant FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) in 2018 itself and generated large scale employment opportunities.
India’s earnings from medical tourism could exceed US$ 9 billion by 2020. By 2025, medical spending in India is expected to grow by almost 9 to 12% making India one of the world’s top ten in this zone. India’s pharmaceutical industry is projected to expand ata rate of22.4% compounded annually. This should take it to the mark of 55 billion US Dollars by 2020. By 2020, India should be the 6th largest market globally in terms of absolute size. Presently, the industry is expanding at a healthy rate of 9-10% year-on-year. The workforce requirement in India’s Healthcare sector is predicted to grow to 74 lakh by 2022 from 35.9 lakhs in 2013 to meet the market demand.
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