Physicians diagnose and treat diseases and disorders of the human body. A physician is licensed to prescribe medications and perform surgery. Many physicians specialize, thus becoming a pediatrician, obstetrician, or another specialist. Physicians hold either a doctor of medicine (M.D.) or osteopathic medicine (D.O.) degree. Approximately 623,380 physicians are employed in the United States.

Quick Facts
Duties Diagnose and treat injuries and diseases; prescribe medications; monitor patient progress; perform surgery
Alternate Title(s) Anesthesiologists, Cardiologists, Doctors, Endocrinologists, Family Practitioners, Flight Surgeons, General Internists, General Pediatricians, General Practitioners, Gynecologists, Industrial Physicians, Medical Officers, Neurologists, Obstetricians, Occupational Physicians, Psychiatrists, Surgeons
Salary Range $50,000 to $100,000+
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Good
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Nationwide
Education and Training
  • Medical Degree
Related School Subjects
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Health
Experience Clinical training and a residency
  • Interpersonal
  • Math
  • Scientific
Personality Traits
  • Helpful
  • Problem-Solving
  • Scientific
Licensure/Certification Required
Special Requirements None
Career Ladder
  • Medical Researcher or College Professor
  • Physician-Owner of a Medical Practice
  • Physician
  • Medical Resident

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