Certain problems regarding the musculoskeletal system require physicians who have obtained an advanced training in the orthopedic area. Read on for the job description of an orthopedic physician.
What is an orthopedic physician?
Orthopedic physicians are medical professionals who specialize in orthopedics. Their work involves assessing, diagnosing and treating the patient’s musculoskeletal injuries and diseases. The musculoskeletal system comprises bones, muscles, ligaments, joints, nerves and tendons.
Duties of an orthopedic physician
- The most common physical ailments that an orthopedic physician handles are fracture or broken bones. Orthopedic patients usually suffer broken legs, arms, hands and ankles. There are different causes of broken bones and it is the duty of an orthopedic physician to make sure that the bones heal and function properly.
- There are many orthopedic physicians who are employed in teaching hospitals and are tasked in providing health education to medical students at residency school or any medical school.
- Orthopedic doctors are responsible in attending seminars, doing rounds, attending meeting and conference.
- Orthopedic physicians spend ample time in seeing their patients. They may also devote in doing research works related to their field. It is beneficial for orthopedic physicians to spend enough time in reading medical periodicals and journals in order to update themselves on the advancements in the field of medicine as well as with the latest equipments.
- Orthopedic doctors are also required for on-call duties and work in emergency events or situations. Whenever the physician is on-call, it implies that his duties can be requested anytime.
Condition of Work
Orthopedic physicians are mostly employed in clinics and hospitals with duties that is frequently exposed in an overwhelming and stressful workloads. There are also some orthopedic physicians who own their own clinic or practice as a professor in a medical school or university. An orthopedic doctor usually works 50 hours or more in a week.
Aspiring candidates are required to accomplish a 4 year undergraduate study, 4 years study in medical school and 2 to 4 years in residency program before taking the USMLE or United States Medical Licensing Examination. If candidates successfully pas the state exam, they will then obtain a license in order to practice medicine. A prior work experience and training in orthopedic department allows the medical practitioner to become an orthopedic doctor.
Occupation and Progress
The median wage for orthopedic physicians is about $404,000 per annum. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, job prospects for an orthopedic physician are great with employment growth of 22% from 2008 and 2018.