Doctor - Eye Surgeon

What do you do for a living?
 
Eye surgeon (Ophthalmologist)
 
 
How did you get interested in what you do? What advice was available to you when you chose this career direction?
 
I studied sciences at A level (highers). I was always interested in the human body and how it worked. Advice re: studying medicine came from a friends parents who were both doctors.  
 
 
What was your journey to reach the role you are in today?
 
I did science A levels (biology, chemistry and maths). I went to medical school in London. On qualifiying I worked in SE England for a couple of years and then in Australia for a year as a junior doctor. In Australia I worked for 3 months in Ophthalmology and really enjoyed it. On returning to the UK I applied for a training post in Ophthalmology and managed to get a placement in Scotland. Further training to become an Eye Surgeon took another 10 years with many further exams etc. In my final year of training I worked in Singapore subspecialising in retinal diseases and advanced cataract surgery. On returning from Singapore I took up a Consultant Eye Surgeon post in Edinburgh.
 
 
Talk me through a day in your life... what sorts of things would it involve?
 
A mixture of working in outpatient clinics diagnosing and treating eye diseases and performing surgery on eyes in the operating theatre. Other aspects of the job involve teaching and training medical students, trainee eye surgeons, nurses and optometrists, carrying out research into eye diseases and overall management of those elements of the eye service which I am responsible for.
 
 
Was it your planned career when you were 18?
 
Medicine was my planned career at 18 but I was 27 when I realised I wanted to specialise in Eye Surgery. 
 
 
What did your mum and dad want you to do?
 
Medicine 
 
 
What advice would you give to someone interested in your career?
 
Spend time talking to students who are studying medicine and also to qualified doctors who can tell you what it is really like. Also voluntary work on hospital wards is good exposure. Medic insight is a project run in Edinburgh http://www.medicinsight.com/ which is a unique platform for providing information to school students about a career in medicine. It places school students with doctors in Edinburgh to shadow them for a day to see what their job entails
 
 
What other directions could you go in /work in within your field other than the job you have chosen?
 
Medical journalism. Medicolegal work. 
 
 
If there is anything you have not covered about your area of expertise, please feel free to add here.
 
Medicine is a great career with many opportunities and is a very portable job with work available in both the developed and developing world.