Surgeon are 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.
As a surgeon, you’ll operate on patients in order to treat disease or injury. You will perform operations by cutting open the patient’s body to repair, remove or replace the diseased or damaged part.
Types of surgeon
Surgeons usually specialise in one of the following areas:
- cardiothoracic: dealing with surgical treatments inside the chest, generally addressing conditions of the heart and lungs
- general: wide range of knowledge and skills to deal with all kinds of surgical emergencies, with an emphasis on acute abdominal problems including the stomach, small bowel, colon, liver and pancreas
- neurosurgery: performing surgery on elements of the nervous system including the brain, spinal cord and extra-cranial cerebrovascular system
- oral and maxillofacial: deals with the diagnosis and surgical treatment of patients with diseases affecting the mouth, jaws, face and neck
- otolaryngology: also known as ear, nose and throat (ENT). ENTs specialise in a wide range of diseases of the head and neck
- paediatric: dealing with surgery of premature and unborn babies, children and young adults up to the age of 19
- plastic: plastic surgeons deal with surgical restoration, reconstruction or alteration of the human body. This includes cosmetic or aesthetic surgery and the treatment of burns
- trauma and orthopaedic: these surgeons use surgical treatments to treat a wide range of conditions of the musculoskeletal system and supporting structures such as ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves
- urology: urologists fix problems of the female urinary system and the male genitourinary tract. They diagnose and treat disorders of the kidneys, ureters and bladder using surgical techniques
- vascular: vascular surgeons concentrate on the diagnosis and surgical treatment of conditions affecting the circulation, including disease of the arteries, veins and lymphatic vessels.
- Examine patient to obtain information on medical condition and surgical risk.
- Follow established surgical techniques during the operation.O
- Operate on patients to correct deformities, repair injuries, prevent and treat diseases, or improve or restore patients’ functions.
- Analyze patient’s medical history, medication allergies, physical condition, and examination results to verify operation’s necessity and to determine best procedure.
- Prescribe preoperative and postoperative treatments and procedures, such as sedatives, diets, antibiotics, and preparation and treatment of the patient’s operative area.
- Diagnose bodily disorders and orthopedic conditions and provide treatments, such as medicines and surgeries, in clinics, hospital wards, and operating rooms.
- Provide consultation and surgical assistance to other physicians and surgeons.
- Direct and coordinate activities of nurses, assistants, specialists, residents, and other medical staff.
- Refer patient to medical specialist or other practitioners when necessary.
- Prepare case histories.
- Manage surgery services, including planning, scheduling and coordination, determination of procedures, and procurement of supplies and equipment.
- Examine instruments, equipment, and operating room to ensure sterility.
Sterilize medical equipment or instruments.
- Conduct research to develop and test surgical techniques that can improve operating procedures and outcomes.
The only way to get into surgery is with a degree in medicine recognized by a health regulating body.
- technical knowledge and clinical expertise in order to elicit the necessary information from patients and identify key issues and the appropriate options
- good hand-eye coordination to perform operations
- communication skills, with the ability to adapt your communication style to suit the situation
- leadership and team involvement skills to positively deal with problems in a non-confrontational away
- negotiation skills in order to reach solutions to complex, and often competing, needs
- the ability to remain calm and in control under pressure
- the self-knowledge to know your limitations and use your judgement to compromise and seek help if required
- the confidence to justify your decisions in high-pressure situations
- the ability to prioritize your workload and delegate work to others
- problem-solving skills to think head and plan for different contingencies, anticipating different situations that might occur
- situational awareness, including how to deal with subtle changes in clinical conditions
- the ability to manage your time and resources effectively
- a flexible approach to work and the ability to consider all factors before reaching a decision
- professional integrity and honesty, respecting both patients and colleagues
- emotional stability and empathy
- commitment, drive and focus
- the ability to reflect and learn from your own work and a commitment to continuing professional development.