If you want to become a cardiologist you have to board on a long and hard road Cardiologists have bottomless knowledge of the heart and cardiovascular-related diseases, including the prevention, detection, diagnosis, and treatment of these diseases. They are not only involved in surgery for patients that save lives but also study the structure of the heart and blood vessels to achieve a higher level of medical treatment.
Cardiologists are not the same as cardiac surgeons. They treat the same organ, but one is a doctor, the other a surgeon. Cardiac surgeons usually perform heart surgery. Cardiologists work together with surgeons to deal with patients and decide if the patient needs surgery or only medication, and before surgery, the cardiologist will do a full checkup.
6 Steps to becoming a cardiologist
After understanding the definition of a cardiologist, the next thing to do is really a long way to go. Here are the specific details for you.
Step 1: Understand the cardiologist description and responsibilities.
1. Cardiologist Responsibilities:
Cardiologists receive a wide range of patients, from the elderly to the young. They are responsible for examining and diagnosing the patient. After evaluation of the condition, performing surgery for the patient, or prescribing medication for the chronic patient to regulate, give health advice, taboos about exercise and diet. Moreover, cardiologists are responsible for conducting laboratory research and sometimes involving public safety education.
2. Cardiologist requirements (essential):
- Bachelor's degree in health or science-related;
- Four years' study in medical school;
- A medical license in the state;
- 3-5 years of residency;
- Excellent interpersonal skills, communication, and leadership skills;
- Experience modern medical technology firsthand and adapt to technology trends;
- Good self-coordination.
Step 2: Think before you do: whether is it worth to be a cardiologist
So why become a cardiologist?
1. Highly respected status
There's no nobler profession than that of doctor. Doctors are the most respected profession in the United States and the world. Even scientists and lawyers are behind it, especially the status of a specialist in the heart.
2. High wages
The salary of a cardiologist is also as high as this status. According to the latest data from Salary.com, the average annual salary of a cardiologist is $ 422,700. Being a cardiologist can bring a lot of wealth and prestigious life that everyone wants.
3. The sanctity of lifesaving
Putting aside material life, the doctor's behavior of saving people and treating diseases is in itself glorious and commendable.
4. Medical research gets deeper
Coupled with the cardiologist's research in the specialized field of the heart, the complexity and professionalism have reached a level that ordinary people cannot reach, and it is a sublime exploration of the human body and life.
But the shortcomings are also obvious, such as:
4.1 Personal time often be taken up
Specialized heart doctors need to deal with emergencies, which easily conflict with personal schedules and time planning. They can sometimes work for long with no fix hours.
4.2. Tense doctor-patient relationship
The tense doctor-patient relationship can also threaten the safety of personal life and property. The occupation itself requires doctors to bear a lot of mental stress.
4.3. Heavy upfront investment
Unlike other professions, cardiologists have very high requirements for medical theoretical knowledge and practical experience, and practitioners need to have a high degree of medical accomplishment.
Weigh the pros and cons of becoming a cardiologist, and you will find that this profession is full of opportunities and challenges, but the gains are also abundant. Moreover, pursuing a bachelor's degree at the highest possible level facilitates becoming a cardiologist, so that your knowledge reserve has met the requirements.
Step 3: Research Best colleges and universities for the cardiologist
- Johns Hopkins University
- New York University (Langone)
- Stanford University
- University of California-San Francisco
- Mayo Clinic School of Medicine
- University of Pennsylvania (Perelman)
- University of California-Los Angeles
- Washington University-St. Louis
- Duke University
- Columbia University
- University of Washington-Seattle
- Yale University
Step 4: Go through College
The universities given below are more preferred.
According to a survey by US News and World Report's, Harvard University ranks first among all top medical institutions, and Harvard Medical School provides medical students with several clinical trial sites, including Massachusetts General Hospital, which provides In-house residency period and more than 10 scholarships in the field of cardiology. Students interested in cardiology can choose from these scholarship programs:
Structural heart disease
Heart failure and transplant.
Stanford University is home to the world's leading research center for cardiovascular disease. They also have special award programs for students, which provide several comprehensive cardiology scholarships, as well as scholarships for advanced cardiology, as follows:
University of Pennsylvania:
Adult congenital heart disease
Advanced heart failure and transplant
The University of Pennsylvania has a world-renowned cardiology authority and a leading cardiology specialist hospital. These facilities provide students with a wide range of research and training programs, opportunities, and many different cardiovascular disease scholarship programs, which can be found on the University of Pennsylvania website.
Entering these universities, all you need to do is to acquire as much science and health-related professional knowledge as possible, and constantly increase your knowledge reserve. If possible, you can participate in the scholarship programs they provide.
Step 5: Residency.
If you have already obtained a medical certificate, congratulations, your career is about to start and you are on the right track. In the United States, medical students must undergo medical residency training to qualify for practice. So interns need to complete this training before they can officially start their career. The length of the university is 3-5 years. Clinical internships are conducted in various hospitals. The annual salary during the internship is 40,000-50,000USD. The entire internship period will be very busy. The first thing to do is to become familiar with the process of hospital patients, accumulate internship experience at each port, and learn related industrial skills. Second, residents need to translate their learned professional skills into clinical experience in these 3-5 years.
Step 6: Prepare relevant skills for a cardiologist
Before becoming a cardiologist, these skills are also indispensable:
Pass USMLE and get a medical license:
This exam is reserved all year round. It is necessary for future employment. Passing this exam can get a medical license. We even have the capital to apply for jobs at top hospitals. Patient: As a doctor, be patient enough to explain the condition to non-professionals and provide easy-to-understand health advice.
Responsible: Be dedicated and responsible for each patient to ensure that the patient's health gradually improves.
Complex problem solving: as a cardiologist you will often face a lot of situations in which you need to take a complex and quick decisions. You should develop a critical thinking and look at a problem from different angles, develop alternative solutions and choose the appropriate solution for each patient case.
Important Tools for a cardiologist
See below a list of tools and devices commonly used for interventional procedures. If you are a cardiologist considering an interventional procedure, learning about the tools and devices gets you more proficient use during surgery.
Vascular closure devices.
Intravascular ultrasound (IVUS)
Fractional flow reserve (FFR)
Optical coherence tomography (OCT) imaging
Develop your career path
A medical student's career is assured to be hard, long, and even a bit stressful, but you must have faith, and step by step, you can achieve your dream job.
Every medical student should graduate from the college with excellent medical resident qualifications. After your internship, you can start with a simple assistant, and engage in some literature interpretation, translation work, and some conference summary work, so that you can accumulate experience and cases at each patient treatment conference, Work to pave the way.