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Checkout the Viable Career Options as an Orthopedic Surgeon/Consultant (Orthopedics)

Career as an Orthopedic Surgeon

If you want to contribute in saving human lives or make them better where cases are complex, critical, and require a high level of specialization, and have a glowing career for yourself, then you can think of becoming an orthopedic surgeon.

Orthopaedics is a field of medicine that deals with diagnosis, treatment and repair of bones, muscles, ligaments, tendons, and joints. In the last four decades, this field of medicine has undergone tremendous growth. With ever-improving technical learning processes, it is still poised for great opportunities and promises as a highly rewarding career.

Why become an Orthopedic Surgeon?

As an orthopaedic surgeon, you will be trained in the art of diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of injuries, disorders or diseases in the musculoskeletal system, which includes bones, joints, muscle systems, tendons, and ligaments. You will use a surgical procedure to treat trauma, tumours, infection, diseases, injuries, or other conditions. You will also treat patients with non-surgical procedures like medication, exercise, or other rehabilitative or alternative therapies. You will monitor ongoing progress and health of patients, adjusting health procedures and medication as circumstances dictate. You will be involved with diagnosis, preoperative and post-operative care. You will also work as consultants to other physicians.

Orthopaedics use non-surgical procedures for treating patients and Orthopaedic Surgeons use both surgical and non-surgical procedures for treating patients.

What does an Orthopedic Surgeon do?

  • Following established surgical techniques during the operation.
  • Examining the patient so as to obtain information on the medical condition and surgical risk
  • Operating on patients to correct repair injuries, deformities, prevent and treat diseases, or improve or restore patients’ functions in the musculoskeletal system, which includes  bones, joints, muscle systems, tendons and ligaments
  • Analyzing the medical history of the patient, medication allergies, physical condition, and examination results to verify the operation’s necessity and to determine the best procedure
  • Prescribe preoperative and postoperative treatments and procedures
  • Diagnosing any bodily disorders and orthopaedic conditions and provide treatments, such as medicines and surgeries
  • Providing surgical assistance and consultation to other surgeons and physicians
  • Directing and coordinating activities of assistants, nurses, specialists, and other medical stuff
  • Examining equipment, instruments and operating room to make sure they are sterile
  • Conducting research to develop and test surgical techniques that can improve operating procedures
  1. Orthopaedic Surgeon (Joint reconstruction and hip preservation): This subspecialization consists of Orthopaedic surgeon specializing in surgical or non-surgical procedures to prevent, joint or hip deterioration, prevent the onset of arthritis, or deals with replacement and reconstruction of joints or hips.
  2. Orthopaedic Surgeon (Hand and other extremities): Orthopaedic Surgeons specializing in hands or other extremities find them treating a range of problems in hand, wrist, forearm, elbows and shoulders, ranging from deformities, injuries, arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, rotator cuff injuries, and other tumours. They may also perform repairs to the vascular system.
  3. Consultant (Orthopaedic Traumatology): Orthopaedic Traumatology is a type of specialized acute care surgery which requires surgeons with a broad expertise in managing trauma, sever emergency situations and critical surgical care.
  4. Orthopaedic Surgeon (Foot & Ankle): Orthopaedic surgeons specializing in foot and ankle surgery are occupied with diagnosis, prevention and treatment of illness, defects, injuries or tumors in the foot and ankle area.
  5. Paediatric Orthopaedic Surgeon: A Paediatric Orthopaedic is a surgeon specializing in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of illness, defects or injuries in the musculoskeletal system of children in the age group of 0-14 years.
  6. Orthopaedic oncology is a specialization that trains orthopedic surgeons for treating and preventing cysts and tumors of bones and soft tissues.
  7. An orthopedic spine surgeon specializes in the diagnosis, prevention & surgical and non-surgical treatment of spinal conditions and other issues.
  8. Orthopaedic Surgeon (Ligament Reconstruction): Orthopedic surgeons who specialize in this field are trained and have experience in complex ligament reconstruction and other knee related issues.

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How to become an Orthopedic Surgeon – Educational Requirement

Postgraduate Studies:

DNB (Ortho): After completing your junior secondary education, you must pick the Science with Biology (PCB) discipline in 10+2, following which you can appear for entrance examinations such as NEET, AIIMS (MBBS), JIPMER (MBBS) and others,to enroll for an undergraduate degree in medicine, MBBS.

After completing your undergraduate, you can work in a hospital in the orthopaedic department and along with that, you can do DNB (Orthopaedics program).

After your undergraduate (MBBS), you can also opt for a Diploma in Orthopaedics.

MD/MS (Ortho): After completing your junior secondary education, you must pick the Science with Biology (PCB) discipline in 10+2, following which you can appear for entrance examinations such as NEET, AIIMS (MBBS), JIPMER (MBBS) and others,t to enroll for an undergraduate degree in medicine, MBBS

After completing your undergraduate, you can appear for entrance examinations such as NEET PG,AIIMS (PG), JIPMER (PG), PGIMER (PG) to enroll for MD/MS (ortho) course in a medical college recognized by MCI (Medical Council of India)

Job Opportunities

After completing your MS (Ortho) / DNB (ortho) training, you can be hired as an Orthopedic Surgeon & Consultant or Resident Assistant Professor in private hospitals, public hospitals and medical colleges across India. If you do an MD in Orthopaedics, you will be recruited as a Consultant Orthopaedic.

Salary of an orthopedic surgeon

As a resident postgraduate student (as a Junior Resident Doctor) while doing an MD or MS (ortho) course, you will be paid a stipend in the range of Rs 40,000-55,000 per month, depending on the institute.

As a DNB trainee, you will avail a stipend in the range of Rs 30,000- Rs 45,000.

After completing your course/ training, you will be paid in the range of Rs. 80,000- Rs 1,80,000 per month, within the 0-3 years of employment as an Orthopaedic Surgeon.

As you approach 6-11 years of service, you may earn in the range of Rs 2,00,000 to 6,00,000 per month.

Beyond 12 years of service, you can may earn in the range of 2,50,000-12,00,000 or even more per month.

Career Growth as an Orthopaedic surgeon

Career Growth as an orthopaedic surgeon is very high.

After completing MS, you will start off as Consultant Surgeon. In certain hospitals, as you move up and gain experience, you can become a Senior Surgeon or a Surgeon Specialist. Then, with more experience in hand, you can move up to become the Head of the Department of Orthopaedics in a hospital.

In a teaching hospital, if an Orthopaedic Surgeon wants to contribute in a teaching role, he is designated as an Assistant Professor after MS. Thereafter, he will grow to become an Associate Professor and then a Professor. Then he might get administrative positions such as a Dean/Director of the hospital.

The healthcare market in India can increase threefold to Rs 8.6 trillion (US$ 133.44 billion) by 2022. India has less than one doctor for every 1,000 citizens, which is less than the World Health Organisation (WHO) standard that prescribes a doctor-population ratio of 1:1,000. This shows there is a shortage of qualified Doctors in India.

Orthopaedic Surgeons require a very high degree and level of education and find their jobs in Medical Industry. The above data indicates greater access of education and medical industry with a very healthy growth rate, as well an acute need of qualified Doctors in a country like India, all of which indicate great future possibilities for people looking to be orthopaedic surgeons in India.

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