A career in...
A career in neurosurgery
Demystifying one of medicine’s most competitive specialties
Neurosurgery has consistently remained one of the most competitive specialties,1 yet students gain little exposure to the field during most medical school courses. Neurosurgical cases are varied and patients are often at very high risk. With every operation comes the risk of severe and permanent brain or spinal cord injury. However, neurosurgical intervention can halt or even reverse debilitating neurological impairment and dramatically improve patients’ lives.
Without spending time in a neurosurgical unit, it can be difficult to get a real idea of what the specialty involves. In this article, we intend to demystify neurosurgery and help those wishing to pursue a career in the specialty to apply for training with confidence.
Neurosurgery involves the operative treatment of brain and spinal cord diseases. The field was pioneered by the American neurosurgeon Harvey Cushing (1869-1939), who conducted some of the earliest research into pituitary surgery, intracranial tumours, and the effects of