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If you value healthy skin and want to help others feel confident about their appearance, then pursuing a career as a dermatologist may be right for you. A dermatologist is a type of physician or medical doctor who diagnoses and treats patients with conditions of the hair, nails, mouth and skin. A unique aspect to this occupation is this type of doctor may perform both medical and cosmetic procedures, desiring to treat diseases as well as improve a patient’s appearance. Medical school is required as well as a residency in dermatology. The length of education is long and therefore, a dermatologist salary is usually high and continues to grow. There’s demand for this occupation and a flexible schedule is available, especially if you own your business. By reading on, you will learn more about the earning factors of a dermatologist salary, what this type of doctor does, the outlook of this occupation and education requirements for someone in this line of work.
A salary for this type of work has a wide range. You may start out at $200,000 but could potentially get anywhere up to $300,000 or beyond. Experienced dermatologists usually make somewhere in the $300,000 to $400,000 range but could make well above $400,000 depending on a variety of factors.
It’s difficult to pinpoint an exact answer to a salary question because so many factors come into play in medical professions, including dermatologists. These factors could include the location, the skills you hold, number of hours you work, how many patients you choose to see in a day, whether or not you have a private practice, reputation, years in practice and so much more. For example, a doctor who works four days a week is going to make less than a doctor who works six days a week because of the amount of patients they will be able to see. Another example would be whether or not you own a private practice, work for a private practice or work in a hospital. A final example is location. If you’re seeking work in a metropolitan area, the pay is usually going to be higher to compensate for a higher living cost. Midwest states, however, may also have higher salaries to lure doctors in despite having to endure the cold winters. Even though there is such a wide range, there is comfort in knowing if you want to earn more, you have factors in place to play with to arrive at your desired salary, it just might include a move or a little extra work.
As mentioned above, a dermatologist is a type of physician or medical doctor who diagnoses and treats patients with conditions of the hair, nails, mouth and skin. Someone in this field is able to help patients with more than 3,000 different types of conditions, including acne, eczema, types of skin cancer and hair loss. Trained dermatologists may also be able to perform surgeries or cosmetic procedures.
A daily schedule for a dermatologist may look like meeting with a patient, gathering information about their concerns, a diagnosis and providing necessary treatment for the discovered conditions. This may include prescribing medicines or ointments, performing a biopsy or surgery and removing growths. There are many types of dermatologists, however, so tasks vary depending on the specialty. For example, a pediatric dermatologist works specifically with children and may treat conditions such as eczema, warts or birthmarks. A cosmetic dermatologist desires to help a patient with their appearance versus a disease. Finally, a veterinary dermatologist has training to treat our furry friends with a variety of skin diseases.
Many of dermatologist patients are referred to them by primary care providers, so dermatologists traditionally work as specialists in a private practice versus in a hospital or clinic and are utilized when their expertise is required. Hospitals or clinics, however, may have a dermatologist on staff if they feel it is necessary.
If you like helping people, communicate well and have a friendly attitude, you’ll most likely do great in this field. In addition, dermatologists value a healthy body, not only on the inside but the outward appearance as well. This type of occupation requires an interest in how the body works and investigative skills to solve any problems that arise. Enjoying a hands-on work experience and working well under pressure can also help you in pursuing this job, especially if you want to perform surgeries.
For dermatologists in the next 10 years, employment is expected to increase 13 percent. This growth is due to the nation’s aging and expanding population, driving the demand for dermatology services in not only the urban areas but in rural towns as well.
Many people interested in having a career in this line of work are driven to pursue it due to interest in the field but also the lucrativeness of a dermatologist salary. Several years of education, training and additional learning, however, is necessary in pursuing this type of career. You can’t earn six figures without hard work to becoming qualified.
To become a dermatologist, one must receive an undergraduate degree, attend medical school for four years and complete a residency and internship, which could take three or more years. If you make the decision to pursue a specific kind of dermatology, additional training will be required.
A bachelor’s degree is a pre-med major is the first step to becoming a dermatologist. The student may choose any major, however, as long as required courses are taken. These courses usually include Biology with labs, Chemistry with labs, Organic Chemistry with labs, Physics with labs, English and Calculus. A course or two in other areas of study are encouraged, showing the desired medical school that the student is a well-rounded individual.
Medical school is the next step after completing your undergraduate degree. Students take the same courses to study advanced sciences courses in the first couple years of their schooling. Depending on the school, the process could be traditional and take specific courses or organize their study by body system.
After the first two years of medical school, the final two years contain clinical rotations. These take place in hospitals and clinics and give the students hands-on experience in a professional setting. If specializing in a specific type of dermatology, students may take additional time, potentially in the breaks from schooling, to take part in rotations in that subspecialty.
To specialize in dermatology, students will apply to take part in a residency, which could last three years, and internships, usually lasting one year, once medical school has been completed. Aspiring dermatologists have the opportunity to work with those who are experienced. Getting licensed is also necessary.
In addition to education and experience, you can also decide to become part of a credentialed association that offers other types of certifications. There are many medical societies and the following are options to consider joining.
Founded in 1938, the American Academy of Dermatology considers itself to be the largest dermatology group in the United States with more than 2,000 members.
The American Society for Dermatology Surgery are a group of more than 6,400 members who, through clinical studies, educational opportunities, forums, mentoring programs and public awareness, strive to prevent, detect and treat skin cancer. The represented surgeons are skin surgery leaders in the profession and want to minimize life-threatening effects and situations in the surgical realm.
The ADA prides itself with having leaders who take part in researching and educating about dermatologist practices, medicine and patient care. To gain membership in this association, merits and contributions in dermatology and medicine as a whole will be looked at and you must be nominated and elected from there. Since it’s start in 1876, ADA has helped develop many other dermatologist organizations, including a few listed in this section, like the AAD and the SID, and is the first dermatological society in the United States.
As a society that values collegiality, innovation, integrity, leadership and shared beliefs within the dermatological profession, the Society for Investigative Dermatology believes it has a mission to advocate and educate others on sciences relevant to the health of skin. With the obstacle of dermatology investigative work spread out over multiple scientific journals, this society desires to develop journals to act as a single resource. In 1937, the founders saw a need to devote to not just clinical work but cutaneous investigation as well, striving to promote investigative dermatology to the respected position where other medical specialties sit.
The Society of Dermatology Physician Assistants (SDPA) was founded in 1994 and consists of people “who provide dermatologic care or have an interest in medical specialty of dermatology.” The society’s 3,400 members follow a mission that utilizes education and empowering other assistants to care for patients in the most effective ways possible.
If you think being a dermatologist is a good fit for you and you want to pursue this profession, start now by taking these necessary steps to get there. Through all of your hard work, you will reach the dermatologist salary you desire and be in a rewarding profession that values people and a healthy body. They strive to empower leaders, educate about the roles of PAs in practicing dermatology and advance in using PAs in practicing dermatology offices.
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