Neurologist Career Information

Neurologists work in one of the most complex and fascinating areas of medicine, involving the brain and nervous system. This branch of medicine doesn't have the high profile of some others, but it's also one of the most important. Neurological issues, many serious medical conditions, affect large numbers of people. New technology is revolutionizing the field. Neurologists are highly motivated and dedicated people, specialists within a special field of medicine, working with some of the most difficult medical conditions known to science.

The work environment

Neurology has a large number of types of practice and areas of specialization. The human nervous system is a huge system which is affected by disease, genetics, and injury in many different ways. 

The basic work environment for neurologists is a clinical practice, usually on the basis of referrals from other doctors. This work environment can vary a lot depending on the neurologist's type of specialization. Some neurologists work in advanced clinical facilities, dealing with major medical situations.  Another form of neurology practice is called "Academic neurology", which is a clinical and teaching role in teaching hospitals. 

There are many forms of neurological practice. The list below is a representative sample:

  • Neurocritical care: The care of people suffering from serious neurological conditions.
  • Neuro surgery: Surgical practices related to many different forms of neurological situation.
  • Neuro  opthalmology: Optic nerve related neurology.
  • Genetic neurological disorders: Genetically related diseases and conditions affecting nerves.
  • Vascular neurology: Neural conditions related to vascular issues, necroses.
  • Cerebral neurology: Brain nervous system issues.
  • Autonomic neurology: Deals with conditions related to the autonomic nervous system.
  • Cognitive neurology: Cognitive and learning disorders.
  • Neural repair
  • Neural rehabilitation
  • Behavioral neurology: Neural issues in patient behavior.
  • Geriatric neurology
  • Pediatric neurology
  • Epilepsy

Each form of neurology deals with neural dysfunction in some form. In some cases neurologists may be dealing with potentially serious issues like loss of physical function like mobility, neural diseases, and progressive diseases like Motor Neuron Disease.

Neurology is a true science in its own right. Nervous tissue is one of the most difficult forms of human tissue to treat. It re-grows extremely slowly, and patients suffering from injury or disease may be deprived of the basics of normal life. The neurologist's role is to both heal as far as possible and to restore as much quality of life as possible for sufferers.

Wages: Median salary is $162,000 depending on qualifications, experience, and specialization.

Hours: Clinic hours, may vary depending on patient needs and issues.

The career environment

Neurology is an expanding area of medicine. The field is also developing considerably as new technology like genetic research and stem cell therapies become available, providing a chance to give patients much better care and chances for better lives.

Career progression in neurology is a purely professional process, advancing through qualifications, experience, and areas of specialization. Research is an area of major interest for neurologists, whose career tracks often merge with research in their area of specialty. In many cases their research is driven by their practice and experience.

Neurology isn't a static science. Since the mid 20th century, neurology has advanced rapidly, opening up new areas of study, new techniques, new discoveries, and, naturally, new career options.