Torn between Nursing and Medicine - page 2

by Loux 15,887 Views | 121 Comments

Hello! I've posted here multiple times about dilemma I pose: my love for both nursing and medicine. I am currently a pre-nursing student, but I'm a bit hazy about my potential future as a nurse. I love the nursing model; I want... Read More


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    Many medical students FAIL their classes and have to retake them. So the program can get longer for them. Some run out of money and have to take time off. It happens to international students a lot after they have travelled so far to go to medical school.
    I don't know why people keep talking about how much schooling MDs have to go through. Many medical schools don't have flexibility. Many don't let you do concurrent enrollment in classes from different school so you can finish faster. Many don't have evening classes,like Pennn university if you want to work and study. Some want you to do their own pre-med program in order to be considered if you are a career changer with a non- science Bachelor's Degree. Some students don't want to go to school out of state so they are stuck with an in-state school that is not flexible enough and they complain all the time about how hard it is. Many are immature kids with no work/real life experience, so they complain all the time.
    Ross University Med school, on ST George island in the caribbean (I believe) can be completed in 3years if you don't take summer vacation. They do their training at US hospitals in New Jersey and other areas. You can achieve any goal that you want. You only need to understand your situation and the kind of obstacles that will be in your way. You will face prejudice everywhere based on history (former nurse going to medical school now?), race, political affiliation, etc etc etc. I'm telling you the truth
    PatMac10,RN likes this.
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    One possibility I didn't hear you mentioning is a DO. I have a friend in osteopathy school and they say osteopathy has a focus on treating the patient not the disease AND you get to train for any technical specialty you'd like including surgery AND you're top of the chain of command. Plus DO's are beginning to become more and more widely accepted in all sorts of medical settings.

    I decided against medicine because of my biological clock! And because the training regimen for doctors is so intense it seems to qualify as hazing. Nursing is hard work too but doctors seem like they don't even get days off EVER for many, many years out of their training.

    Also, if I decide to become a NP I can become semi-autonomous, which I like since I'd also like to learn some other healing modalities (like clinical herbalism etc.) and incorporate those into my practice. In the meantime, nursing will give me time to develop those other skills privately as I slowly build my professional judgment and experience.

    Not many doctors tend to be able to spend personal time with patients, either, and I like the contact involved. Not to say that nursing isn't busy and crazy, but it's hands-on crazy.
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    Cinquefoil, it's because I don't want to sound as though DO is for nurses who want to study medicine. I'm yet to learn more about the DO program. Some medical students try to make it seem as such on studentdoc.com.
    When I don't know something, I won't talk much about it. But, when I know it, omg, I just don't shut up hahaha
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    Quote from carolmaccas66
    Don't stay in nursing. Go into medicine. I would urge you to try and find out how to make it happen, even if you have to work nights after school stacking grocery stores shelves (what I've done to get through study), or do any crappy job you can get to make ends meet.
    I repeat: don't waste your time and money on nursing. Have something else you can fall back on, even if you start medicine and don't finish it, you can always go back to nursing later.
    Good luck.

    I have to disagree with this poster. I don't think nursing is a waste of time or money. I wanted to be an ER doctor from age 4 until being a junior in high school. Then, I started volunteering and spending time in the hospital and seeing that doctors spent about 15 minutes at a time with their patient. If even that. Nurses were the ones at the bedside, truly healing them.
    There are specialties where nurses are given a lot of autonomy...on these floors, I see nurses every day telling the residents what orders to put in! ICU, PACU....critical care, you aren't just mindlessly following orders. This poster sounds a bit burned out in my opinion...


    At the end of the day, you need to figure out what kind of lifestyle you want to lead and what context you want to see your patient in. That should lead you to your decision.
    Good luck!
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    get master degree in nursing so you can practice medicine and be a nurse at the same time.
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    Good questions, OP! I grappled wih this question for two years as I prepared for either. It sounds like we have a LOt in common: I HAVE to critically honk and trouble shoot problems, I love differentials and systems thinking, and also really have a deep love for fellow humans. I ended up choosing nursing for a few snow reasons: As an FNP, I could still prioritize my rapport and presence with patients with more time with them, 2) I. Primary care, I could have the same scope as the family docs in the states I want to practice in, 3) that I could take a break and gain some great experience as a clinical nurse before going on to my masters (it's like you get a residency in the middle) (not to mention paying off some loans), 4) a big reason I would sacrifice 6 addditionl years of my life for education was to be called Dr. so-&-so (a dangerous reason to seek power), and most importantly, that the risk of my original inspiration for joining healthcare would be so warped and filtered by the medical education system that I would emerge, like SOOOoo many residents, a jaded, bitter person. A few people can make it through medical education without impairing their ability to normally and compassionately relate to the world, and they are amazing docs, but for me, the risk was too high to gamble those personal qualities. Lastly, I want to someday b a great dad, which can be hard to do when you're a physician. I love being an RN, I am supports in my critical thinking and problem solving where I work, and I am super excise for NP school!!!! Hope this helps!
    Faith213, PatMac10,RN, and GHGoonette like this.
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    I was originally a premed, but I was able to finish my first degree without taking a few of the prereqs. My intent was to finish, but like many college kids I wanted some freedom and a liveable income so I took my B.S. degree and my paramedic certification and got two jobs. One, teaching high school science, and the other working every weekend for an ambulance service. I didn't like classroom teaching so after a year and a half I quit and became a cop. I continued to work some as a paramedic, but my career became devoted to law enforcement. I continied, changed agencies, took a promotion that gave me little time to be out on the streets with plenty of time off, and my medical interests began to rekindle.

    Long story short, I decided hat being a PA would be the right balance at this point in my life, but since PA schools are so focused on applicabts having a lot of prior healthcare experience I never applied since I hadn't worked in EMS in five years now. To nursing school I went. There's also only one PA program in my state, it's private, and I'm not moving out of state.

    I do prefer the medical model too since it seems more conciseand the investigative process of a differential diagnosis appeals to me more than bedside patient care. I think your path is fine. Just take your premed courses as yu can, finish your BSN, and apply. You may face some criticism over getting a nursing degree, but you're young and have nothing to lose. Good luck!
    sophie_bob_kids and Faith213 like this.
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    To Imthatguy...

    I liked your post. I am/ was in a similar boat and have chosen the BSN to NP route.
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    To clarify about DO...they "promote" that they really focus "on the whole patient", but that's a bunch of BS. The only difference between DO and "MD/allopathic" is that DOs take the COMLEX and learn OMM, or osteopathic manipulative medicine. That's it. They take the same classes, do the same rotations, etc. DOs (AACOMAS, the applying service) uses grade replacement, while AMCAS doesn't. It's challenging to get in either way.

    I'm debating between nursing/medicine myself, and honestly considering the medicine route. I love the idea of differentials, figuring out what's wrong, and trying my best to "make it better" if at all possible. I'm particularly interested in NICU, PICU, or Peds Cardio, since I had open heart surgery at under three months old.
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    Quote from carolmaccas66
    I have not read all these comments yet.
    I personally really, really would not encourage someone with intelligence and excellent grades to go into nursing. If you have the grades, and can make all the pre-requisites required for entrance into your choice of college/university, go for it. Don't stay in nursing. Go into medicine. I would urge you to try and find out how to make it happen, even if you have to work nights after school stacking grocery stores shelves (what I've done to get through study), or do any crappy job you can get to make ends meet.
    I repeat: don't waste your time and money on nursing. Have something else you can fall back on, even if you start medicine and don't finish it, you can always go back to nursing later.
    Good luck.
    So does this mean that those who go to be RN or LPNs don't have "excellent grades" or "intelligence"? I am wondering if you meant what you said the way I am reading it, because of course you have your own opinion that you are entitled too. Seems harsh though.

    To be honest, I went back and forth as well. I started college this past fall @ 17, but have been taking college classes since 15. I wanted to be an Anesthesiologist, Psychiatrist, and Cardiologist, but I ended coming right back to nursing by the middle of my junior year in HS. Not to brag on myself by any means, but I was considered intelligent. I was an honor and AP student, and also in the top 10% of my class upon graduating. My point is, that I didn't choose nursing as an alternative to Medical School or "easy way out", so to speak. I made a decision based on what values nursing is built upon, how flexible the field is, and how long I wanted to be in school. Nurses are so multi-talented and gifted it is ridiculous. I so want to be in school until I'm almost 30. I want a profession that will allow me to have that patient contact that I so desire or allow me to have an office job, if I wish in the future. I want to be in a humble profession where most are happy being where they are, but where advancement is also possible.

    You seem to be a intelligent person who knows what you want. It seems, that deep down inside, you might really lean towards medicine and that OK. I, of course, could be wrong. Regardless of what my perception is, or anyone elses for that matter, do what makes you feel right. People looked down on me for not choosing medicine and purusing nursing , but what do I care it's my life! Lolz!!!
    Faith213 likes this.


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