Obstetrics and gynaecology
Dharani Hapangama and Melissa Whitworth explain the possibilities in the exciting field of obstetrics and gynaecology in the light of the changing world of Modernising Medical Careers
For obvious reasons, obstetrics (care during pregnancy and childbirth) is as old as humankind. No other specialty gives the opportunity to be a surgeon and a physician and to save two lives for the price of one. Gynaecology complements obstetrics perfectly, allowing the practitioner to follow patients' reproductive health from infancy to old age. However, misconceptions among medics regarding stress levels and workload and misperceptions about career opportunities have left this dynamic and exciting specialty undersubscribed.
If variety is the spice of life, obstetrics and gynaecology must be the red hot chilli pepper of medicine (figure 1). The usual working week takes a meandering course through a variety of specialist activities, flowing through the white waters of gynaecology theatres, to the waterfalls of the labour ward, before settling down in the motionless pools of gynaecology and antenatal outpatient clinics. Contrary to common belief, we still “play God” by creating and