Science Questions

How do I get into Pathology?

Sun, 31st Oct 2010

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Jay Winter via facebook asked:

Can you possibly ask Dr Lishman exactly what steps I would need to take to work in Pathology. I'm fascinated post mortems and cause of death investigations. I am planning to study medicine, but is that 100% necessary to get to 'the slab'. Many thanks.


We put this to Dr Suzy Lishman:

Suzy -   To be a pathologist, you need to do a medical degree first.  So, after getting good  GCSEs and A levels, hopefully get into medical school which is getting harder to do year by year.  Then you'll spend 3 or 6 years as a medical student, followed by 2 years of foundation training that all doctors do before they start to specialise.  Then you can apply to a specialist training program which is a minimum of 5 years.  So we’re looking at probably 12 years or so from deciding to go medical school, to actually getting to the end of your pathology training.  Many people actually take time out along that time to do some extra research, perhaps a PhD or specialise in something.  So it can take even longer.

Chris -   When I tell people I'm still taking exams at the age of 35 - I think I finally finished them, I think I've taken my last exam now - they're normally quite gobsmacked!


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