over 40….. go PA or DO????

Home Forums Premed Students over 40….. go PA or DO????

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    I always wanted to be a Doctor, but life got in the way…..
    Fast forward…..
    Now at 42 divorced, remarried,& with twelve year old son (Manny).
    I am a full time student at a state college in my Junior year of a Biology major and have managed to keep a 3.7 GPA. My original plan was PA school because of
    1) my age
    2) not wanting to do the extra 3 years of residency after med school
    3) not wanting to take on such big debt so late in my life.
    But now after a friend of mine who was a PA for 7 years decided to go back to school and do the few pre-reqs she needed for med school, took the MCAT and got ACCEPTED at 38 ……(I’m so jealous :blush:)
    I am starting to ask my self why not ??
    I know my age is a factor, but I do have the drive, the discipline and the support of my family.
    Maybe DO school? can I get in?? :confused:


    I too am having regrets. I am 36 years old and will be graduating in the summer with associates in Science and Math. I want to become a Doctor but, felt my time has left. I thought of instead getting into Nursing school to receive my Bachelors degree then enter the Nurse Practitioner’s program. Now that I am about to transfer to CSUSB. I am getting cold feet to get in the Nursing program. I am sitting here thinking should I take the chance and take the extra biology classes to take the MCATS? I would love to become a Doctor. To think I look back and can remember sitting in my class as a child, the teacher asking me Darlene what do you want to be when you grow up? I would stand up proudly and say a Doctor. I have now 4 daughters, a husband that acts like 3 extra children and 2 pets. Been married 15 years and wishing to become a Doctor. I think is it silly to want this that I desire? I hope not. I read a blog somewhere on the internet this week and it read about a woman that was 54 years old going back to school. She told the world that if we have air in our lungs and determination we can accomplish anything. So I decided I am going to take the biology classes what is the worst that can happen? I go back to enter the Nursing program that just takes 2 years. That is the chance I will take. Hope this helps. It is never too late for anything. Just look we buy cars and houses that are worth alot knowing we might be able to pay them off. Taking risks is part of life.


    hands down PA, less liability, better hours, less training and excellent pay


    When you get 50, are you gonna be what you wanted to be or will you be lamenting what you didn’t do??

    At 45, I’m going for what I WANT to be and that is an MD!!!


    I read an article recently about the top regrets of people who were dying. (Copy and paste below) – I don’t think someone can tell you what is best for you in particular. I think you just need to think through what is really important to you in your life, whatever that may be, whatever others may think about that, whatever difficulties it may present. At the same time, make sure one particular pursuit doesn’t compromise the other things that are important to you in life.

    A nurse has recorded the most common regrets of the dying, and among the top ones is ‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’. What would your biggest regret be if this was your last day of life?

    There was no mention of more sex or bungee jumps. A palliative nurse who has counselled the dying in their last days has revealed the most common regrets we have at the end of our lives. And among the top, from men in particular, is ‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’.

    Bronnie Ware is an Australian nurse who spent several years working in palliative care, caring for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. She recorded their dying epiphanies in a blog called Inspiration and Chai, which gathered so much attention that she put her observations into a book called The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.

    Ware writes of the phenomenal clarity of vision that people gain at the end of their lives, and how we might learn from their wisdom. “When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently,” she says, “common themes surfaced again and again.”

    Here are the top five regrets of the dying, as witnessed by Ware:

    1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

    “This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.”

    2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.

    “This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”

    3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

    “Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.”

    4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

    “Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.”

    5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

    “This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.”

    What’s your greatest regret so far, and what will you set out to achieve or change before you die?


    When my father was dying of cancer, of the many regrets he told me had was of not finishing Stanford law school.

    Having trained as a hospice volunteer, I’d never heard a dying person mention anything like this before. But it would be an understatement for me to say that my father’s last words are with me forever.

    Me, I’d like to “go out” trying since the end will come for ALL of us one day.


    One more thing, it’s harder to get into PA school than into either an MD or DO program.


    PA school, hands down. A much more humane route of training and work. I’ve never heard that it’s harder to get into PA school than an MD or DO program. Where did you find that, Apop?


    No kidding, medical school is one of the hardest graduate schools to get into I thought…


    I can’t recall where i got that info from, whether it was something published by one of the national organizations of PA’s, a PA schools website, ect. But after considering it myself and looking at what the requirements were at that time ( maybe 5 years ago), it wasn’t a difficult conclusion to draw.

    At the end it may just boil down to percentages of folks admitted given that there are far more MD programs than PA programs. So it stands to reason that the fewer the seats, the harder to is to get one.


    And one more thing, hard is relative.


    I too am a mother of 5 and over 40. I struggled back and forth about going back to school and was even embarrassed about telling people I wanted to be a doctor. when I finally did I heard that person say” why would you wait that long to go back to school?” ….. I am more excited and ready to go now after reading your question. Good luck!!!!


    YES!!!! Get excited. We only have one life, live it to the fullest!!!!

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