Best Fields of Medicine

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    My name is Amanda Jackson and I am a senior in high school in Dripping Springs, Texas. Having always wanted to be a physician, I was curious to know which fields of medicine are the best (and worst) for a woman who wants to maintain a family/social life to go into. I am doing my senior research paper on this, so any and all help would be greatly appreciated! My email address is: . Thank you for your time. [email][/email]


    Hi Amanda,

    I think that it’s all very dependent on who you are and what your support system is like. But traditionally some of the more “family friendly” specialties seem to be family medicine, psychiatry (in some cases), and pediatrics. I have also heard a lot about anesthesiology and dermatology being very sane fields to pursue in general. I’m only in my third year of med school, so I’m definitely not an expert 🙂 but my friends and I are starting to explore residency opportunities, and we’re all married or close to it and have/want families. And of course, my two friends with kids are bucking the trend and going into General Surgery and OB/Gyn, two of the more traditionally brutal fields of medicine for women with families! PM or e-mail me if you have questions.

    Erin, MS3


    Apparently O&G (I think you call it OBGYN in the states) is the worst, but I don’t care- I’ve got my heart set on doing it anyway!

    I think the thing is that if you are determined to succed in both- career and family- and you have a supportive partner, you can have the best of both worlds in virtually any specialty.


    Psychiatry is definitely a good field for combining family and work, especially if you may have kids during residency. It depends on where though (my residency was reasonable by half way through my third year but not before). Certainly once you are done, psychiatry is a great place to be, especially if you are in private practice because you have all the flexibility you want with good earning potential. If you want more details please feel free to ask specific questions about different fields.


    Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation is an EXCELLENT field for women. It is not as well known, and amazingly is male-dominated. It affords wonderful opportunities for part-timing, and has the potential to be low stress, fun, and interesting. Residency, too, at most places, is much more palatable than other residency programs.


    I am partial to Geriatrics. It is very flexible and there are several people I know working part-time hours. The residency is so-so. It starts out with Internal Medicine which can be quite busy – especially the first couple of years. However the residency/fellowship specific to Geriatrics is very reasonable and it has been a good one for me with young children. Of course, I love working with older patients so I enjoy this aspect of it as well.

    Hope this helps … oh yes, another thing. There is a tremendous shortage of Geriatricians (or “gerontologists” as they are known in the US) so the job prospects are fantastic.

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