Surgeons are among the busiest people. From their years in medical schools, they have mastered maximizing each hour to learn as much as they can while potentially saving lives.
As full-fledged surgeons, they spend several hours each day in hospitals and emergency response.
Here, surgeons fulfill their duties to their patients and strive to improve their lives through the surgical treatments they execute.
In this article, you will learn what surgeons do on a daily basis. This article will also discuss how they typically manage their hectic schedules.
The truth about surgeons’ workload
Surgeons maintain regular schedules and appointments. Their calendars remind them about their upcoming surgeries, seminars and classes to attend, and other engagements related to medicine.
However, surgery remains unpredictable. Surgeons enter the hospital not knowing what to expect.
Such may be true for other careers, but surgeons are always prepared to face any patient who needs immediate surgical care.
Because of this, surgeons are always on-call, even when they are in the hospital. Whether there is a car crash or an admitted person has appendicitis, surgeons must provide the treatment the patients need.
Furthermore, surgeons oversee the patients from beginning to end—from diagnosis to surgery to post-operation recovery.
A surgeon’s typical early morning routine
Surgeons typically wake up early from a tiring night. Like the rest of us, they may spend the first hours of the day planning for the day, cleaning themselves up, exercising, eating breakfast, and preparing for work.
They usually start their morning hospital or clinic shifts from 7:30 to 8:00. But this may change if the surgeon is studying for specialization or another surgical program.
Coordinating with the other surgeons about the present cases
Once surgeons arrive at the hospital, they will review the surgical cases and patients for the day. The surgeons discuss these with their colleagues who worked last night.
This way, they may collaborate in helping the patients recover seamlessly and learn from one another.
Accomplishing the first hospital rounds for the day
After the discussion, the surgeons will visit their patients to monitor their recovery and assess their condition. The nurses and staff will brief the surgeons about the patients’ status.
They will do these in, at least, their first two hours in the hospital.
After accomplishing the first check-ups and rounds in the hospital, the surgeons will proceed to the scheduled surgeries for the day.
Surgical operations, the primary part of their work, will take much of their working time. For many hours, surgeons will treat injuries, deformities, and diseases with surgical operations, tools, and machines.
Surgeons usually operate on trauma, emergency cases, tumor removal, and head injuries. They also treat gastrointestinal diseases, including disorders in the pancreas, esophagus, gallbladder, intestines, and appendix.
Contributing to the surgical department
The surgeons will also help the hospital’s surgical department and their colleagues who need assistance. The surgeons will plan, schedule, and classify the procedures that the surgical department will facilitate.
Before and after each operation, surgeons ensure that every tool and equipment in the operating room is sterile, meeting hygienic and safety standards.
They may also help the hospital in ordering new surgical tools and supplies. Surgeons may also conduct research and tests that may improve the hospital’s surgical care and operations.
Visitations and check-ups
When he does not have a scheduled operation, the surgeon conducts check-ups at his office. Here, he will meet new patients who need his surgical expertise.
The surgeon will assess if the patient needs surgical treatment based on the patient’s physical condition, medications, history, and laboratory results.
If the patient needs to undergo surgery, the surgeon may also provide antibiotics, medication, and diets that the patient needs to prepare and observe.
The surgeons must also explain the surgical procedure to the patient, answering all of their inquiries about the operation.
Furthermore, they must help prepare the patient’s case history. Coordinating with other specialists and departments, the surgeons will determine the optimal treatment to improve the patient’s health.
Studying and attending academic sessions
Although surgeons spend at least sixteen years to enter the field, they must still intensively study. Surgeons must learn the latest surgical techniques from medical journals and modern research papers.
The most respected journals today that surgeons read and cite include
- The Annals of Surgery
- The British Journal of Surgery
- The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Surgery
- The Journal of the American College of Surgeons.
Surgeons may also attend seminars, surgical discussions, and medical conferences that will help them collaborate with their colleagues from different parts of the world.
Performing their specialized tasks
The surgeons’ responsibilities and schedules can vary based on the specialization that they took and where they practice their careers.
Surgeons in private practice have a more flexible and independent daily schedule. Their work focuses on specific patients and families.
Meanwhile, surgeons in academic surgery spend much of their day researching, investigating, and teaching within medical schools. They treat uncommon conditions and rarer surgical cases as they lead surgical breakthroughs.
Those in ambulatory surgery handle quicker operations, so their daily workload is more flexible. In this setting, patients arrive at the surgeons’ office, undergo surgery, and leave on the same day.
Surgeons in government programs spend days assisting agencies and communities with their expertise.
The surgeons serving in the military have a unique daily schedule. The type of cases they treat depends on which division they belong. They also participate in training sessions, drill sessions, and military medical conferences.
How much do surgeons earn?
Surgeons, on a daily basis, conduct hospital rounds, various types of surgery, check-ups, surgical studies, and other specific tasks based on their specialization.
They also assist other surgeons and the hospital where they work.
In doing these, surgeons save patients’ lives, advance the surgical field, and improve their practice.
Given their loaded yet productive daily workload, how much do surgeons earn? In Australia, surgeons have the highest salary, earning over $394,303 annually.