Quote from Topher53
So I'm looking at a good 10 years of schooling. An MD would only require 2 more years of school. I'm definitely at a crossroad here.
For nursing you do 4 years undergrad, then do ICU work 1-2 years (or longer) then start school and attend for about 2-2.5 years or so. You are looking at 7-10 years or so let's say, depending on time spent in ICU, and whether core courses are taken before hand. The bare minimum would take 7 years.
For MD, you would be in undergrad for 4 years, and take all the required sciences for medical school (which are not what the nursing curriculum is, so you should make a decision fast because doing nursing classes and a bunch of sciences would be extremely hard.) Most people choose and easier undergrad major because you need a great GPA. Then you have to take the MCAT, apply and hopefully be accepted to medical school, do 4 years there, and then to become an Anesthesiologist 4 years residency.
So it can be anywhere between about 2-5 years difference in length between the two. For the CRNA bare minimum it's 7-8 years to complete. For anesthesiologist, it will be 12 years regardless , unless you were in an accelerated medical program, which combines undergrad and medical school into about 6 or 7 years. If you want that title of "I'm a doctor" then go to medical school and be a doctor. Being a doctor and being a nurse no matter if they are in the same field are two different things.
I like the nursing side more than the medical side of healthcare which is why I chose nursing. I didn't settle for nursing, I wanted to do this. I prefer the field of nursing over the medical after what I saw personally and what I learned about each. It's not just the length of time someone goees to school that is different about nurses and doctors.
You should try and shadow both a doctor and a nurse and see what interests you. Most usually are drawn to either one, not both, when they really learn what each is about. It would be a shame to go through a bunch of schooling to find that you don't like what you do. (which I have seen in doctor friends and nurses as well)
Are you interested in anesthesia specifically or just thinking about CRNA (highest paid nursing specialty) or doctor because of the pay? If that's it then you must weigh the pros and cons of the cost of tuition, loans, and salary. Med school isn't cheap and it's loans. You do not make a whole lot when you are doing your residency for those 4 years. People think they will come out after med school or even after residency making big bucks, but that isn't always the case. You are paying back a lot, and for a lot.
It's cheaper to become a CRNA, (generally, but of course there may be some exceptions) and you may not always make as a much as an anesthesiologist, but you may not have to pay for things they do either. But keep in mind that CRNAS can make as much and sometimes more than some doctors depending on their specialty.
I say all that, but money should never be the main motivation for any job. If you hate it, you hate it, no matter what your salary is. Also, it's not always as simple as it's two years more so I might as well become a doctor. There is a lot more to it.