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Thinking about doing medicine

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    Hi,

    I'm currently in my last year of high school and will be going to college in September. I am thinking of studying either Maths or Medicine at university.

    The reasons I want to do Medicine is because I want to help people and I know how medicine is life changing to someone and how it means the difference between life and death. Medicine has always been fascinating to me, but I feel that if I am not 100% enthusiastic about studying Medicine like some people, who have dreamed of being a doctor since they were children, then it isn't the right choice for me?
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    You don't have to be purely enthusiastic about medicine to want to do it, most people decide on it less than 2 years before applying and everyone has doubts.

    That said being a doctor isn't the only thing which outlines your description, that can be done through many other subjects like nursing, pharmacology or even computer science or engineering
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    you don't need to have dreamt about being a doctor since you were a little child to study medicine, but you do need to LOVE it. my mum is a doctor, so i have always been familiar with this profession. many people think that medicine is a very beautiful profession and it is, but once you decide to become a doctor, you have to devote your life to it. you will have to study like crazy in college and you will have to work like crazy after you graduate. you can have a family, friends, hobbies, obviously, but they will always come second in your life (i know this because of my mum, she lives for her profession). medicine is one of those professions which you must take as your mission in life.
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    I agree with the above posts. While lots of people have their hearts set on medicine for years, it doesn't mean they're more appropriate people to become doctors. They might have totally the wrong reasons, influences or perception for studying medicine/wanting to be doctor and understanding what the profession entails. Or they might not just have the suitable traits needed.

    It is completely natural to have doubts about suitability for medicine. Applicants get it all the time, as do medical students (from year 1 to year 5/6) as well as doctors years after graduating. It is a big jump to make, with a lot of responsibility being placed upon you and a lot of commitment being required (both in terms of study, professional life and prioritising) however the rewards of helping others and patient contact are clearly profound and very few careers come close (nursing, teaching). And then there's the academic challenge of diagnosing, managing and treating patients with various conditions etc.

    I would approach considering medicine in two steps. One step involves looking at what it means to study medicine. The other step looks at what it means to practice medicine and be a doctor/surgeon. Studying requires you to have a great fascination with biological processes, a good memory and the ability to apply pure science into different contexts (+ more skills). If you enjoy biology, particularly human physiology, there's a good chance you'll like the first half of the course. Looking at what it means to practice medicine would involve you arranging various bits of work experience to shadow different doctors (try to get a GP, hospital ward Dr and a surgeon to cover the 3 main types) and see their working day, personal skills and personality traits required to do the job, demands of the job, ups and downs etc. And then look up what career path(s) doctors can take and what happens after graduation. If you then pair what you've learned and observed from this with you enjoying the sciences and wanting to help others, medicine might be an appropriate choice for you.

    I hope that helps If you have any questions, the medstudents, applicants and a few doctors here on TSR will be happy to help address them.
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    You've said why medicine interests you, but why does maths interest you?
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    If you do decide to go for medicine, year 12 will be all about making sure you experience as much as possible to: a. be sure this is what you want b. gain suitable knowledge to be able to prove this is what you want to do/ are capable of doing to universities.
    Use this next school year to get work experience, work with as many different types of people as possible and to work hard!

    My main bit of advice though: Keep your options open. Once you have told people (particularly family) that you are going to be a doctor it would be very difficult to one day turn around and say 'I'm not doing that anymore'. Be sure to research other careers to check you wouldn't enjoy them just as much.

    Whatever you decide, good luck!
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    If I was you I'd start applying for work experience and voluntary jobs now. I applied at Christmas time in y11 and only started in July it takes forever to sort out CRB/ references etc.
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    (Original post by simon-123)
    Hi,

    I'm currently in my last year of high school and will be going to college in September. I am thinking of studying either Maths or Medicine at university.

    The reasons I want to do Medicine is because I want to help people and I know how medicine is life changing to someone and how it means the difference between life and death. Medicine has always been fascinating to me, but I feel that if I am not 100% enthusiastic about studying Medicine like some people, who have dreamed of being a doctor since they were children, then it isn't the right choice for me?
    Hey If you're good enough you'll get in!

    The reason you STATE in your application and interview needs to be carefully spun though.
    This little article...
    http://www.doceatdoc.com/whydoyouwanttobeadoctor/
    ...goes through some techniques for spinning like a pro!

    I went through it with a nephew who's applying in 2012.
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    Thank you for your replies

    (Original post by Elwyn)
    You've said why medicine interests you, but why does maths interest you?
    Maths interests me because I've always been good at maths and its a subject which I excel in along with the sciences. I love that Maths is challenging and also that it is something which has a big influence on the world.

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Updated: April 14, 2012
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