How Do You Become an Obstetrician?

obstetrician As you pursue a career in the healthcare field, you may be curious to know more about how to become an obstetrician. An obstetrician is a medical doctor who specializes in caring for pregnant women and in delivering infants. Obstetricians study surgical skills as well as gynecology so they can help women all through pregnancy and deal with various situations that may arise during labor and delivery. Read on to discover more about what you need to do in order to pursue this particular medical profession.

Many Years of School

Like most medical doctors, obstetricians go to school for a number of years, typically eight more years after getting a four-year bachelor’s degree as an undergraduate. While your undergraduate years may be devoted to pre-medical studies, they don’t necessarily have to be. People who major in many different subjects can go on to medical school, as long as they are willing to work hard and show they can handle a rigorous academic program. You will also need to take the MCAT, a test that helps show your preparedness for medical school.

The eight years following college generally involve four years of medical school and four years of residency, in which you specialize your learning and skills. It’s during residency that you train more specifically to be the kind of doctor you want to be, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You will need to make the decision regarding specialty sometime during your final two years of medical school, so that’s when you would begin to study to be an OB/GYN in earnest.

Learning More About Obstetrics

During your residency years, you will be given responsibility for caring for OB/GYN patients so that you can learn as much as possible about caring for women during pregnancy, labor and delivery. Some patients you will work with will have normal pregnancies and routine births, while others may have high-risk pregnancies and/or experience complications along the way. All of this is good training to become an obstetrician, because it’s important that an OB/GYN be able to handle all sorts of situations. Obstetrics is also considered a surgical sub-specialty, according to Wise Geek. Since some babies need to be delivered by Cesarean-section, excellent surgical skills are important. In addition to gynecological knowledge and surgical skills, obstetricians also need to learn about patient psychology and emotional health. A good OB/GYN helps to encourage and assure patients and their families during pregnancy, and helps educate patients about pregnancy and childbirth so that they can feel as comfortable and confident as possible as they head into labor and delivery.

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The work of an obstetrician is demanding and can involve a lot of long hours, both during your training years and later when you’re working. However, there is a great deal of satisfaction and joy in helping women have healthy pregnancies and in helping them safely deliver a new life into the world. If you feel an interest in working with women, babies and families, then looking into ways to become an obstetrician may be a good career path for you to pursue.