If becoming a neurologist is on your wishlist then this article will educate you on how to become one.

Becoming A Neurologist

Being a doctor is a great thing. It is a profession which offers you an opportunity for social service with a really good remuneration. Neurology, as you may already know, is the branch of medical science that deals with the study of brain and the nervous system. You may also be aware about the difference between a neurologist and a neurosurgeon. A neurologist offers non–surgical treatments for the patients suffering from neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease etc. while a neurosurgeon deals with surgical cure of neurological diseases such as tumors. There are many machineries and imaging techniques, such as MRI scan, to detect and diagnose the neurological problems. Neurology is a fast growing branch of medical science and as the discipline deals with one of the vital organs of human body, it naturally demands expertise from the practitioner. Although technical advancement in this field has made the diagnostic and therapeutic areas of neurology easier than older days, the profession essentially demands in-depth knowledge on the whole of human physiology and anatomy along with other concepts. Browse down to know more!
First step towards this is to get enrolled in one of the best colleges which offer a pre-medical or biology major course so that you can parley the reputation of the college along with your grade to get admitted to a medical school. Take a 4 year graduate degree on medicine and apply for an internship. Complete 1 year of internship and register for a residency program. Get enrolled in a fellowship program to gain more specific training (optional). Appear for a certification test to get certified as a neurologist. Check whether any additional license / qualification are needed to practice in your state/ territory and start your career as a neurologist.
  • DM in Neurology
  • PG Diploma in Neurology
  • Masters of Neurological Rehabilitation (University of Western Australia)
  • PH.D. in Neurology 
Skills Required
  • Diagnostic and therapeutic skills to avoid misdiagnosis and administer proper treatments.
  • Planning and counseling skills to make a proper plan of the treatment and counsel the patients and their families accordingly.
  • Communication skills to be able to reach out and connect with patients.
  • Dedication, commitment and professional ethics to uphold the medical oath taken at the time of licensure
  • Presence of mind and dependability to face stressful situations
  • Confidence and pleasing personality to win over and instill faith in patients.
  • Neurologists should be capable of working under pressure and emergency situations. There are no fixed working hours in this profession and neurologists may have to report back for emergencies at short notices. 
Roles and responsibilities
  • Diagnosis: Neurologists are responsible for the diagnosis of various neurological disorders with the help of various advanced technologies and machineries.
  • Treatment planning: Once the patient is diagnosed with a neurological disorder, the neurologist has to plan for the treatment methods and instruct the supporting staff accordingly.
  • Treatment: Treatment measures should be adopted according to the nature and complexity of the disease. 
  • Monitoring the progress of the treatment and rescheduling the plan accordingly is also important.
  • Obtaining medical history of the patient to check the existence or possibility of other diseases and also check whether the patient is allergic to any of the medicines.
  • Identifying whether the patient is suffering from any side effects of the treatment and treating them, if any.
  • Educating the patient about the nature and seriousness of the disease and things to be followed to avoid further risks.
  • Ensuring quality treatment.
  • Providing moral support for the patients and their families and helping them in dealing with the situation. 
Career Prospects
A specialization in neurology gives you an excellent career opportunity. The demand for neurologist is increasingly on the rise. Post-graduate degree holders in neurology can dedicate their services to carry forward research and further studies in this direction. Neuroscientists in private sector can make more profit than in public sector. A specialized neurologist can find an opportunity in leading hospitals both private and run by Government. Many specialists opt for self-employment and practice from their private clinics while some choose to work as academicians and university professors.
Pursuing a career as a neurologist gives you respect, earnings and satisfaction but, at the same time, you should be prepared to work round the clock and round the year. Hope this article provided answers to your doubts about this profession. Go forward with your decision. All the best!

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