A physiatrist refers to a medical expert who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of ailments mainly by utilizing physical means, such as physical therapy and medicines. Such an expert is proficient in helping patients who are recovering from any kind of injury due to stroke, arthritis, joint problems, musculoskeletal disorders, neuromuscular or movement disorders, cancer, spinal cord ailments, amputations, traumatic brain injuries, and lung disorders. A physiatrist is the only one who can deal with your ailment-related pain effectively and can also avoid surgery. This is because she or he aims at helping the patients to be pain-free and functional as quickly as possible.
Found in hospitals, private clinics, and in rehabilitation centers; physiatrists can possess a degree of either Doctor of Osteopathy (DO) or Medical Doctor (MD). So, what makes one a reliable physiatrist? Here are the essentials that all probable candidates need to meet!
In most cases, candidates having an MBBS degree from an accredited university are eligible to apply for a Master’s Degree course in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation. It goes without saying that most states have many colleges that are providing this course. In order to apply for the MBBS course, the candidates need to pass the Higher Secondary Exam followed by the entrance test conducted by the related university.
Qualifying Exams and Training
To be a physiatrist, it is necessary to obtain a Master’s Degree in physical medicine and rehabilitation. A physiatrist’s training features four years of residency training along with four years of medical school. In the case of the former, the first year training is totally on general practice; while the following years focus on specialty training. Once the residency training is over, the candidate can choose to specialize further for which training is obtained via a fellowship – one to two years of further training on treatment in the desired field. The likely candidates can complete the following fellowships:
- Spine and musculoskeletal rehabilitation
Spinal cord injury
Pediatric medicine (especially for dealing with children below 18)
It is vital to note that these Fellowships or further areas of specialization are optional to take after successfully completing a Master’s Degree course in physical medicine and rehabilitation. However, it has been observed that physiatrists with any of these Fellowships are bound to get higher pay. What’s more, to it is that job prospects for such high profile candidates are usually more than those with no specialization.
Skills and Latest Knowledge
A reliable physiatrist is not the one who is trained or certified to practice anywhere but is the one who is aware of the latest trends in this field and has both experience and certification. Therefore, these experts must know about the latest treatment and recovery procedures available for the diseases by updating themselves through the news every day. Further, these experts must have better interpersonal skills for spreading awareness on various related topics and convincing the patients along with their family about the need for physical therapy.