Neurosurgeons are highly specialized physicians that perform surgery on the brain and spinal cord to correct neurological problems. For example they perform surgery to correct herniated disks in the spinal cord that are causing pain and disability and they operate on the brain to remove tumors or stop hemorrhages. Such surgeries are complex and risky and even when successful they can have negative side effects. The training to become a neurosurgeon is arduous and lengthy lasting approximately 14 years. Aspiring neurosurgeons first complete a bachelor’s degree with pre-medical courses such as biology chemistry physics and mathematics. This is followed by four years at an accredited medical school and then at least three more but usually closer to eight years of internship and residency. Throughout their training they must adhere to the guidelines and pass written and oral exams administered by the American Board of Neurological Surgery (ABNS). In addition they must be licensed in the state in which they practice. Entry-level neurosurgeons usually work as salaried employees of group medical practices clinics and hospitals. Some neurosurgeons are full-time researchers but even those that conduct surgery are often affiliated with a university medical school. Neurosurgeons often work close to 70 hours per week and even if they themselves do not conduct research they must keep up with new procedures and discoveries. This is one of the highest-paying specialties in the medical field. According to the website beginning neurosurgeons usually earn an initial annual average salary of approximately $100000 but after 20 years of experience they earn an average annual salary of approximately $600000.

Education Required: Doctoral Degree
Avg Salary: $350000
High Salary: $600000
Low Salary: $100000
Tasks: Specializes in brain surgery.
Diagnoses brain cancer, tumors, and other disorders.
Performs surgery to fix brain hemorrhages.
Attempts to minimize side effects from brain surgery.
Also Called: Surgeon
Medical Doctor
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