Surgical Specialty review

Ok I will do my best for this post since I’m on my rest time from the hectic Hygiene 😉 Seriously, I’m hoping love for Hygiene will come very very soon!~

Basically almost everyone already knows the concept and duration of HOMO from my previous post (Medical Specialty Review). After HOMO completion, a trainee surgeon will be trained for 4 years. Local universities include UM, USM and UKM; overseas especially UK and Australia with their Fellowship of Royal Colleges of Surgeon (FRCS). More information for basic general surgery training is here, by Malaysian Academy of Surgeons. Every surgeon with different subspecialties have to undergo basic surgical training (General Surgery – 4 years). Now let’s talk subspecialization:

  1. General Surgery – there are lotsa subspecialties under this name, 2-4 years of training after completion of 4 years basic surgical training and 3-5 years of HOMO. Hand surgery, Vascular surgery, Breast surgery, Endocrine surgery, GIT surgery, Hepatobiliary surgery, Colorectal surgery, Trauma surgery, Pediatric surgery, Oncologic surgery, Urology. All these are in high demand and have pretty good pay (especially in private sector).
  2. Cardiothoracic – many people love this one. Despite being famous, this specialty requires cut-throat personality, and very excellent pay once consultant position is obtained (you should be in your 40s by that time). In IJN (Institut Jantung Negara), the training duration is 6 years. But hey, read about my other article on cardiothoracic surgeon (and cardiologist) here.
  3. Neurosurgery – another famous one, like cardio. Do you realize that in movies which involves surgeons, those in cardio and those in neuro always antagonize each other? Meaning both are kinda arrogant egoish pokes (no offense intended here). Since both heart and brain are important organs of the life, it’s kinda easy to understand why both specialties need 6 or 7 years of training. I think patience and perserverence are what that makes both specialists highly valued in society (or in movies). And no doubt, both are the highest paid surgeons in private sector, with salary flirting millions ringgit annually.
  4. ENT surgery – 4 years. Easy to set up private practice.
  5. Orthopedic surgery – good market since many people are always traumatized. Bone fractures, motor vehicle accidents, sports etc. Further subspecialization: Astronaut???? Nyeh nyeh… kidding!~
  6. Plastic surgery – Excellent in art? Perfectionist? Loves beauty and cosmetics? This specialty is in high demand in Malaysia. Note that plastic surgery is not just about cosmetics… anything with the suffix plasty (angioplasty, anorectoplasty, rhinoplasty) might be your future job. Very good income, best in private practice. 3-4 years of training.
  7. Anesthesia – let’s not forget surgeons’ best friends. 4 years of training after completion of HOMO. Although the work is plannable, but any pre- or post-op complications especially when intubation is needed, anesthetist has to take charge. Don’t think the work is easy. I saw like 3 anesthetist in one operation room in IJN during my clinical posting. Apart from knocking someone off to sleep, they have to be from the very start of operation till the very end. They’re in charge of looking for the patient’s stability. They’re in charge of the amounts of drugs for the patients. Surgeons just get in, cut, close up, and leave. Anesthetists stay…

So, this is the best I can do for surgical specialty review. Mind you, if you are really committed to be a surgeon, forget how long it takes… it’s gonna be so long that you won’t have time to even fondle your spouse. You’ll be fine and stable at your 40s… Well, life starts at forty anyways… 😉


7 thoughts on “Surgical Specialty review

  1. Hi Dr.Chua,

    My name is Ramesh. I wonder whether you could help shed some light on a few of my queries. I am currently in the UK, having completed my MRCS and basic surgical training. Trying to get into the higher surgical training posts here before coming home.

    I had a few queries actually, if its ok with you. These are:

    1)Have you completed your higher surgical training in Malaysia?
    2)How easy is it to get into the training posts, and are there posts outside the UM,UPM,USM?
    3)Do these posts get advertised?
    4)Is the training experience good?

    Hope this is not too much trouble for you. As such my intention is to pursue colorectal surgery in Malaysia in the end…god willing 🙂


  2. LOL! seriously diz kind of ppl are tickling my intestinal villi *whatever that means*! haha! first (or 2nd? or 3rd? of X-th?) was the psychiatrist, and then the just-graduated local HO, n now diz? i wonder who’ll come next.. o well i might just sound sarcastic there but seriously!

    • LOL relaxxxx jatdin… if they wanna ask, just ask so I’d know what to ask if I were in their place in the future…

      Plus, this is efenem’s weblog… where’s jatdeng’s weblog that u promised?

  3. ngenge.. u know how much i love to spam in ur blog aite? seriously its HILARIOUS, plus he was referring to u as DR CHUA (aka the naughty boy!!) omg seriously i feel like roflmao! maybe he was confused btw ‘Dr Chua the naughty boy’ as the blogger of this blog with the tittle or ur next post.

    oh btw, IN THE FUTURE, if u were to ask the same Qs as these ppl, promise me that u’ll read the blogger’s profile first b4 popping out any Qs ok? hahaha!

    p/s: mcm lg best je jadik spammer dr blogger… xmolah buat blog.. 😛 besides i didnt promise u anything pon..

  4. i’m a Nigerian trained doctor currently practising in Lagos, Nigeria. I want to migrate to Malaysia to start a residency program in Surgery. Can I have more info about any qualification I need to obtain before migrating.

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