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212: The Specialty Stories Podcast is Live!

By Ryan Gray, MD of Meded Media

Session 212 This is a full recording of the first episode of the Specialist Stories podcast, which is another addition to the MedEd Media Network. The idea of this podcast was actually born out of The Academy where Ryan had several interviews with different specialists to help students get an understanding of what each specialty was like as well as their pros and cons. Through the Specialist Stories podcast, Ryan interviews different physicians from various specialties to help medical students and premedical students get different perspectives on what led them to their career path. Guests will be sharing with you stories of specialists from every field to give you the information you need to make sure you make the most informed decision possible when it comes to choosing your specialty. In this week's episode, Ryan talks with Dr. Michelle Hure, a dermatopathologist who has her own solo practice in her community. Here are the highlights of the conversation with Dr. Hure: When Michelle knew she wanted to be a dermatologist: From an interest in trauma surgery to dermatopathology Realizing the need for work-life balance Coming to a point of not wanting to do until her 4th years during rotation What she likes about her specialty: Changing people's lives and curing cancer Getting to do surgery Being able to get home at 5 Making use of her brain everyday What a dermatopathologist does: Two routes: Dermatology residency Pathology residency As a pathologist, it involves diagnosing conditions or interpreting biopsies that is key to a patient's treatment plan. You are the doctor's doctor Can do both clinical and pathology A day in the life of Michelle: Reading slides of biopsies she has taken personally or those from other doctors Seeing patients at 10 am Traits that lead to being a good dermatopathologist: Open mindedness: Being able to think of different possibilities and looking at slides without any biases Knowledge of clinical history and clinical medicine Curiosity Openness to different differential diagnosis A lot of thinking and investigation What makes a competitive applicant to dermatology and dermatopathology: Dermatopathology is very tough to get into since there aren't many programs so programs available are highly competitive. Be always in your game. Walk the extra mile. Do rotations in a place you're really interested in doing your residency as well as your fellowships. Be willing to take initiative. What residency was like for her: Collaboration as an important piece Pick a residency at the particular institution where that fellowship is to have a higher chance of getting in. What she wished she knew going into dermatology/dermatopathology: It's possible to have a family early on. Family comes first, residency and fellowship come second What she wished primary care providers knew more about dermatopathology: Training in dermatology and pathology What Michelle likes most about being a dermatopathologist: Intellectual stimulation Patient interaction Surgery Being able to cure cancer What she likes the least about her practice: Dealing with insurance companies If she had to do it all over again, would she choose another specialty? No, not at all. What is the future of dermatopathology? The pressure of being more noticeable to people so that biopsies must be done by experts in the field and not just "general" pathologists - It's not about money, it's about patient care! The saturation of the field Some pieces of advice to those wanting to be a dermatopathologist: Look for work-life balance. You have to be happy with the specialty you pick. In dermatology or pathology, you will do well money-wise, but you're also going to have a good work-life balance, which is one of the most important things you need to consider in going to a particular field. Pick a specialty that you're going to do well in and you're going to be happy with. Links and Other Resources: www.mededmedia.com Email Ryan at ryan@medicalschoolhq.net Specialist Stories Podcast The OldPreMeds Podcast The MCAT Podcast

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