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Life As a Surgeon

Occupation Description Physicians who treat diseases, injuries, and deformities by invasive, minimally-invasive, or non-invasive surgical methods, such as using instruments, appliances, or by manual manipulation.

Life As a Surgeon: What Do They Do?

  • Prepare case histories.
  • Diagnose bodily disorders and orthopedic conditions and provide treatments, such as medicines and surgeries, in clinics, hospital wards, or operating rooms.
  • Examine patient to obtain information on medical condition and surgical risk.
  • Provide consultation and surgical assistance to other physicians and surgeons.
  • Manage surgery services, including planning, scheduling and coordination, determination of procedures, or procurement of supplies and equipment.
  • Follow established surgical techniques during the operation.

Skills Needed to be a Surgeon

Surgeons state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

  • Eye Surgeon
  • Ophthalmic Surgeon
  • Upper Extremity Surgeon
  • Orthopedic Surgeon
  • Cardiac Surgeon

Is There Job Demand for Surgeons?

There were about 45,000 jobs for Surgeon in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 14.4% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 6,500 new jobs for Surgeon by 2026. The BLS estimates 1,900 yearly job openings in this field.

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The states with the most job growth for Surgeon are New York, Maryland, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Mississippi, Vermont, or Rhode Island. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Surgeon Salary

The average yearly salary of a Surgeon ranges between $94,960 and $208,000.

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Surgeons who work in Alabama, Alaska, or Arizona, make the highest salaries.

How much do Surgeons make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $278,810
Alaska $208,000
Arizona $208,000
Arkansas $266,630
California $221,490
Colorado $244,940
Connecticut $224,570
Delaware $277,280
District of Columbia $244,230
Florida $211,640
Georgia $273,450
Hawaii $208,000
Idaho $241,030
Illinois $243,350
Indiana $259,850
Iowa $231,450
Kansas $282,940
Kentucky $268,550
Louisiana $253,630
Maine $286,810
Maryland $284,120
Massachusetts $242,790
Michigan $244,710
Minnesota $208,000
Mississippi $280,350
Missouri $248,250
Montana $266,470
Nebraska $287,890
Nevada $208,000
New Hampshire $208,000
New Jersey $285,850
New Mexico $280,430
New York $250,620
North Carolina $278,260
North Dakota $219,390
Ohio $267,680
Oklahoma $279,020
Oregon $208,000
Pennsylvania $252,140
Rhode Island $257,000
South Carolina $208,000
South Dakota $208,000
Tennessee $271,680
Texas $238,080
Utah $208,000
Vermont $272,550
Virginia $264,160
Washington $240,910
Wisconsin $208,000
Wyoming $208,000

What Tools do Surgeons Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Surgeons may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Windows
  • MEDITECH software
  • Epic Systems
  • SmugMug Flickr
  • Electronic medical record EMR software
  • Practice management software PMS
  • Human resources management system HRMS
  • Computer imaging software

Becoming a Surgeon

What education or degrees do I need to become a Surgeon?

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where do Surgeons Work?

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The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

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Similar Careers

Those interested in being a Surgeon may also be interested in:

Career changers with experience as a Surgeon sometimes find work in one of the following fields:

References:

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More about our data sources and methodologies.

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