Is it worth it?

Is is worth it? Financially?

Heres a good list to look at:

  • Quote:
U.S. Physician Salaries - Ongoing Salary Survey

*Survey includes base salaries, net income or hospital guarantees minus expenses

June, 2003 - Present

SPECIALTY Years 1-2 >3 Max

Allergy/ Immunology $158,000 $221,000 $487,000

Ambulatory $ 80,000 $112,000 $152,000

Anesthesiology: Pediatrics $ 283,000 $311,000 $378,000

Anesthesiology: General $207,000 $275,000 $448,000

Anesthesiology: Pain Management $315,000 $370,000 $651,000

Cardiology: Invasive $258,000 $395,000 $647,000

Cardiology: Interventional $290,000 $468,000 $811,000

Cardiology: Noninvasive $268,000 $403,000 $599,000

Critical Care $187,000 $215,000 $320,000

Dermatology $ 195,000 $308,000 $452,000

Emergency Medicine $192,000 $216,000 $295,000

Endocrinology $171,000 $187,000 $260,000

FP (with OB) $182,000 $204,000 $241,000

FP (w/o OB) $161,000 $135,000 $239,000

FP - Sports Medicine $ 152,000 $208,000 $363,000

FP - Urgent Care $ 128,000 $198,000 $299,000

Gastroenterology $265,000 $349,000 $590,000

Hematology/Oncology $181,348 $245,000 $685,000

Infectious Disease $154,000 $178,000 $271,000

Internal Medicine $154,000 $176,000 $238,000

IM (Hospitalist) $161,000 $172,000 $245,000

Medicine/Pediatrics $139 ,000 $168,000 $271,000

Medical Oncology $198,000 $257,00 0 $455,000

Neonatal Medicine $286,000 $310,000 $381,000

Nephrology $191,000 $269,000 $447,000

Neurology $180,000 $228,000 $345,000

Obstetrics/Gynecology $211,000 $261,000 $417,000

Gynecology $159,000 $213,000 $358,000

Maternal/Fetal Medicine $286,000 $322,000 $610,000

Occupational Medicine $139,000 $185,000 $290,000

Ophthalmology $138,000 $314,000 $511,000

Ophthalmology Retina $280,000 $469,000 $716,000

Orthopedic Surgery $256,000 $342,000 $670,000

ORS - Foot & Ankle $228,000 $392,000 $791,000

ORS - Hand & Upper Extremities $288,000 $459,000 $770,000

ORS - Hip & Joint Replacement $330,000 $491,000 $715,000

ORS - Spine Surgery $398,000 $670,000 $1,352,000

ORS - Sports Medicine $266,000 $479,000 $762,000

Otorhinolaryngology $194,000 $311,000 $516,000

Pathology $169,000 $321,000 $610,000

Pediatrics $135,000 $175,000 $271,000

Pediatrics - Cardiology $145,000 $282,000 $607,000

Pediatrics - Critical Care $196,000 $259,000 $3 98,000

Pediatrics - Hematology/Oncology $182,000 $217,000 $251,000

Pediatrics - Neurology $175,000 $189,000 $362,000

Physiatry $169,000 $244,000 $313,000

Podiatry $128,000 $168,000 $292,000

Psychiatry $149,000 $169,000 $238,000

Psychiatry - Child and Adolescent $158,000 $189,000 $265,000

Pulmonary Medicine + Critical Care $215,000 $288,000 $417,000

Radiation Oncology $241,000 $385,000 $787,000

Radiology $201,000 $354,000 $911,000

Rheumatology $179,000 $229,000 $378,000

Surgery - General $226,000 $291,000 $520,000

Surgery - Cardiovascular $336,000 $515,000 $811,000

Surgery - Neurological $354,000 $541,000 $936,000

Surgery - Plastic $237,000 $412,000 $820,000

Surgery - Vascular $270,000 $329,000 $525,000

Urology $261,000 $358,000 $619,000

SOURCE: Allied Physicians, Inc., Los Angeles Times and Rand McNally

*Updated June, 2006

Click Here to complete our confidential work conditions survey.

This is still old almost 4 years ago but most of the salary info I have seen is even older ( like 1999) so this gives an idea of what some make!


I guess a question that some folks have is it worth it financially at X or Y age. Example: if you start medical school at 42 versus at 56…and more importantly you have to take into account years of training. So for someone that starts medical school at 56, end medical school at 60. Depending on residency choice this “may” impact earning potential and is it worth it. Obviously it is all relative and what is worth it for some may not be worth it for others. I personally could no see myself embarking on this endeavor at the age of 56 and ending residency at 63 at the earliest to then maybe work for 10 years…

Yep I understand I thought If I was 50 right now what would I have done? Probably just stayed a nurse the rest of my life but I was 41 when I started Medical School so I think I’m still way young enough. I do agree that Money is not my main motivation, it can’t be this is way too hard for just money, I’m doing this cause I burn to do it!

I wanted to post this cause a lot of people look at the Loans we take out and gasp and think it may not be worth it, it’s not worth it to try, if you do this you must succeed. Thats my push for myself.

Yeah, many folks do balk at the loans…but I guess some folks have undergrad loans and grad loans, and medical school loans…now THAT is a lot IMHO…and then you do need to sit down and objectively figure if it is worth it. I hear you about the money BUT to be honest…after spending the last three years busting my ass money has become an issue. Not meaning that I want to make a bushel of it…but make enough to live comfortably and put my kids through college w/o undue hardships.

Yeah I hope this list of real Salaries help to make it seem worth it.

Woo Hoo…Actual information that lists out net income!!!

Yah for your posting…

I’ve been grappling with trying to find out/figure out incomes and what to except/hope for after everything…Both for myself, and to try and convince a SO to back the endeavor…

I am one of those with undergrad and post grad (law school) loans, so adding med school loans is going to be a big addition onto an already big pile o debt.

So adding that into whether SO will be willing to live the student life again after my only recently starting back to full time work is something that earnings really plays a part in.

Thanks so much for posting net income numbers…

No problem It’s something that keeps coming up and the info I’m used to seeing is so outdated, one source said that FP’s made 90k for instance, Really? I know a lot of FPs and they told me they made much more so heres a source with those numbers

Maybe the 90K is after taxes? these salaries are prior to taxes right?

Now if you had some survey that broke down what the usual work week looked like for the different specialties that’d be icing on the cake eh…

I’m guessing with net income that takes care of the whole insurance is killing me, making it too difficult to practice etc…

I suppose it would stick in your crawl if you were used to bringing home 250k a year and then your insurance rates went up 50k and you only brought home 200k for doing the same work…But…

When you can take a hit to your salary that’s larger than the average 4-5 person family in the US makes and still keep on trucking, someone needs to stop complaining me thinks…

That list is national average, right? What about regional differences? I would imagine a rural doc in Appalachia is going to make less than a FP in Minneapolis, for example.

Yes that may be true although my offer for Rural Ga is very good and near the top of the scale, they are really hurting in the southern part of Ga. I’m told I will have a lot of patients. But thats what I want RURAL FP with some OB…

Actually rural FP earnings are often higher; for example, there are apparently differentials in Medicare reimbursements for the same codes in order to assure that rural areas get health care. There are also all sorts of arrangements between primary care docs and their local hospitals, Area Health Centers, and municipalities – basically these entities want to make it desirable for docs to come there, and so they look at all sorts of ways to sweeten the pot. And don’t forget their overhead and cost of living may be lower.

Honestly having spent time not only with providers in my own specialty, but folks in all kinds of other specialties now, I gotta say that what really is bugging doctors is not making less per se - it’s how they’re “losing” money. It pretty much pisses us all off that so much overhead goes into staff time to argue with insurance companies in order to get authorization for tests, or referral to other specialists, etc. I have had to call insurance companies on behalf of patients in order to go through “peer to peer review,” which consists of a real-time conversation with a doctor (insurance company employee) so that I can beg for the test my patient needs based on my hands-on detailed assessment. Often I’m kept on hold for 15 or 20 minutes prior to the onset of this conversation. Who reimburses me for this time? No one. If my prescription is overruled (I’m batting about .500 at the moment), well, I’ve donated a half hour of my time so that the insurance company saves money. Great. Do I see that in any way? Of course not.

I guess it’s a little late to say “don’t get me started,” huh?


I for sure know that docs in rural areas like Mary stated and thouse is Southern states do make more than docs on the East/West coast. This, along with the cost of living being less in the South and in rural areas makes you think twice about where to go practice…

Hey I hear ya, I’m going into a group practice down in southern GA. He has a lot planned like group malpractice coverage. I will have hospital privileges and a few other things I’m very excited about that but I do understand all the Hoops you have to go through.