Are you passionate about becoming an obstetrician? Go through this article and learn about how to become an obstetrician.

Becoming An Obstetrician

Do you wish to pursue a career in medicine? Do you love working with pregnant ladies and infants? Then obstetrics would be a right choice for you. It is a branch of medical science dealing with surgical specialty related to pregnancy and prenatal (intrauterine period) or postnatal (up to six months after birth) child-care. It is related to gynecology which is the medical branch that deals with the study and treatment of female reproductive system. Both these departments overlap in many areas. In modern days, most of the gynecologists perform obstetrics also. An obstetrician deals with one of the most complicated specializations in medicine; hence there is a very less chance for compromising on the qualifications needed to be a professional obstetrician. You have to undergo many years of training to establish this as a career. This article will take you through the requirements and career prospects of the profession. Read on!
Becoming an Obstetrician
The first step to pursue a career in obstetrics is to get enrolled in a biology, chemistry, physics or genetics major course. It is essential to perform well in these courses because many medical schools require high grades for admission. Along with that, you also need to clear a common entrance test to get into a medical school and complete a 4-year graduation course in medicine. You must also pass the certification examination after this. Residency of 2 years after graduation is optional post which you must enroll for a 2-year M.D (Doctor of Medicine) in Obstetrics. A residency in a hospital, as a obstetrics, is a must now. This generally takes 4 years to complete and if interested, you can spend some additional time for fellowship program also. A total of 12 years are usually taken to complete the entire program. A Ph. D (Doctor of Philosophy) in Obstetrics and Gynecology or Prenatal and Reproductive Medicine can also be extremely beneficial.
Courses Required
  • Post Graduate Degree in Obstetrics and Gynecology: It deals with detailed and specialised study of female urino-genital system, pregnancy and childbirth.
  • PG Diploma in Obstetrics: It caters to the basics of obstetrics, maternal and child-care and is of a shorter duration, usually a year. But, this course alone does not entitle you to practice. 
Skills Required
  • Critical thinking to take fast decisions in emergencies.
  • Diagnostic skills to analyze the patient and diagnose abnormalities and risk factors, if any.
  • Therapeutic skills to decide the treatment methods and medicines for betterment of the patients.
  • Communication skills to communicate clearly and effectively with patients and colleagues.
  • Dependability as a service professional. There are no particular working hours for an obstetrician and the doctor should be approachable at all times for emergencies.
  • Dexterity of fingers and hands to complete the procedure effectively and precisely.
  • Ability to work under pressure to handle the stress of an emergency. Emotional attachment with the family must be avoided.
  • Fair understanding of imaging techniques so as to scan reports and other imaging results that are part of the regular check-ups and diagnoses.
  • Counseling skills to educate the expecting mother and her partner about delivery and child-care. 
  • Commitment and selflessness are also essential while working in a service-based industry. 
Roles And Responsibilities
  • Helping the patient maintain good health throughout the pregnancy period and taking care of all her needs and ensuring proper care for the newborn.
  • Genetic screening of the fetus to identify genetic disorders like Down’s syndrome and looking at newer integrated screening and ultra-sound scanning to identify the risk factors. Assessment of placenta and fluid levels are also major functions.
  • Performing amniocentesis i.e., testing of the amniotic fluid which is a form of prenatal diagnosis and maintaining antenatal record for future reference
  • Giving pre-delivery counseling and tips on child-care and monitoring the development of the pregnancy and rescheduling consultations as per request.
  • Keeping records of birth and death for vital statistics. Analyzing medical reports and testing the results to learn about the medical condition of the patient.
  • Diagnosing and treating diseases and abnormalities related to female reproductive system and prescribing medicines and tests. 
Career Prospects
Medical science is an ever-growing profession! Reproduction is the fundamental feature of life and is essential for the sustenance of human race. Women, nowadays, are very keen on obtaining the best services for their babies and thus, obstetricians are always in demand. It is a service-based career which is followed by a substantial salary. As in any other professions, qualifications and experience makes your career brighter as a obstetrician. Additions like sub-specializations give more focus to your area of work. 

It is a long road to reach this career. But, if you have a passion for it, then it can be the perfect choice. Hope this article helped you learn about obstetrics and its job outlooks. Good luck for your future!

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