Cardiology, plastic surgery, medicine… the choice is endless for MBBS graduates

After completing one of the most coveted and trying undergraduate courses in India, thousands of MBBS students ponder over one question that has plagued them eternally: “What next?” The MD course, which one usually takes up, offers a plethora of options, which acts as the epicentre of all confusion. Although conventional options like surgery and radiology seem to be in immense demand, students take into account not only the extravagant returns, but also the fees, working hours and job satisfaction. This in turns invites them into a world of innumerable possibilities, ranging from cardiology to plastic surgery.

Here is what some students told The Hindu EducationPlus:

Aaron Punnen, third year, MBBS, MS Ramaiah Medical College

After MBBS I'd like to pursue a surgical degree. The subject that interests me most is plastic surgery. Obviously everyone would first think of the now popular "nose jobs" or breast augmentation but there are a myriad other applications of this field. There are lots of children born every day with congenital deformities of the face or body.

These deformities are disfiguring and plastic surgery is the way out. Plastic surgery is a life-changing field with high satisfaction for both patient and doctor. Even burn and trauma victims can benefit a lot from it.

Varsha Ram, second year, MBBS, KVG Medical College, Sullia

After I complete my MBBS, I would like to pursue my childhood dream of becoming a cardiologist. Cardiologists these days are in demand due to changing food habits, environment, stress and tension that eats into people’s lives. Moreover, I have been inspired by doctors like Devi Shetty who have created such a difference in this country as well as around the globe. Hence my contribution would add to theirs in making the world a better medically equipped place to live.

Mamta Chhabria, third year MBBS, MS Ramaiah Medical College, Bangalore

I'm not entirely sure yet, but ophthalmology is one subject I might like to pursue post-MBBS. The precision of ocular surgeries is what had me impressed and stop to consider it. Add to that the fact that there are hardly any emergencies enables one to have a quite normal lifestyle sans the stress which comes with conventional medical fields, plus a guaranteed employment as there will never be a dearth of patients needing spectacles.

Sonia Kaur Singh, second year MBBS, Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore

I’m halfway through my course and of all the specialties that I could choose from I’m inclined towards medicine. Surgery is supposed to thrill a lot of people out there, but medicine is my calling. Medicine is challenging, intriguing and every case is a puzzle waiting to be solved. After an MD in Medicine, I will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to handle a patient with any multisystem disease process.

Practising as an ‘internist’ (or a general physician) would mean that I’d have a lot of cases to see with flexible working hours, which is a huge factor for me. I always have the choice of super-specialising in any one of the organ systems (neurology, cardiology etc.,) or the newer specialties like geriatrics which would be more taxing in certain ways but super-specialists seem to be in demand in bigger cities these days.

Kunal Kanakia, first year MBBS, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Pondicherry

My primary choice for MD would be surgery. It is a very popular choice, second only to radiology and probably gynaecology among women. It appeals to me as it is the most hands-on specialty of the medical field. Since I chose the medical field so that I could personally change the lives of people for the better, surgery fits the bill. Though becoming a surgeon is probably the longest course one can take, the scope is very good in the medicare sector.

There is a distinct and obvious dearth of specialised surgeons in India since most surgeons tend to pursue their careers abroad. I for one have absolutely no desire to do so, and many job opportunities are available in India.