Nature of the work
An anesthesiologist is trained to provide pain relief and maintenance or restoration of a stable condition during and immediately following an operation or an obstetric or diagnostic procedure. The anesthesiologist assesses the risk of the patient undergoing surgery and optimizes the patient's condition prior to, during, and after surgery. In addition to these management responsibilities, the anesthesiologist provides medical management and consultation in pain management and critical care medicine. Anesthesiologists diagnose and treat acute, long-standing and cancer pain problems, diagnose and treat patients with critical illnesses or severe injuries and direct resuscitation in the care of patients with cardiac or respiratory emergencies, including the need for artificial ventilation, and supervise post anesthesia recovery.
Anesthesiologists can receive training in the following subspecialties:
- Critical Care Medicine - diagnoses, treats and supports critically ill and injured patients, particularly trauma victims and patients with multiple organ dysfunction.
- Hospice and Palliative Medicine - prevent and relieve the suffering experienced by patients with life-limiting illness, to maximize quality of life while addressing the physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs of both patient and family through the course of the disease, including the dying process and subsequent family grieving.
- Pain Medicine - diagnoses and treats of the entire range of painful disorders. provides a high level of care for patients experiencing problems with acute, chronic, and/or cancer pain.
The residency training program for anesthesiology is four years. Fellowships in an anesthesia subspecialty and in education or research may also be taken for an additional year.
The annual salary for anesthesiologists ranges from $331,000 to $423,507.