A Career in Dermatology or A Career As A Dermatologist

A Career in Dermatology or A Career As A Dermatologist

At this time, people are so concerned about their beauty. They want their skin as glowy as celebrities. We will discuss Career in Dermatology here. Even a small skin problem worries them. They want proper guidance to look after their skin. Due to all these reasons, the demand for dermatologists is increasing day by day. Dermatology is a branch of medicine which deals with skin abnormalities and issues. It aims to keep the skin, hair, nails, and scalp healthy. In short, all skin diseases and disorders come under this branch of medicine. In addition, dermatologists are knowledgeable in cosmetic disorders of the skin, such as hair loss and scars. This is one of the best branches of medicine with so many scope and opportunities. A physician who is specialized in this branch is called a dermatologist. It generally takes twelve years to be a dermatologist as it requires high skills and knowledge. This is a highly respectable job in most countries. This job offers good salaries, making it a desirable career option.  

Career in Dermatology in the USA

To become a dermatologist, you have to get a bachelor’s degree first. You should focus on keeping your grades up to get a decent college afterward. After being admitted to a college, you can apply for Pre-med concentration and choose a major if required (as per the college’s norm). Then, you need to appear and qualify for the MCAT.  We will drive into more detail about the requirements below:

  • Get a bachelor’s degree or complete a pre-med course 
  • Subjects included in the pre-med course: biology, organic chemistry, general chemistry, physics, biochemistry, or sometimes mathematics
  • Qualify in the MCAT exam.
  • Select a college of your choice.
  • Qualify initial two parts of USMLE
  • Complete residency, i.e., one-year internship for dermatologists. 
  • Take a fellowship program in specialized fields (optional).
  • Pass the final part of USMLE. 
  • Sit for dermatology board exams and get a license.

One can retake the board exam and renew their license. These are the typical steps to be followed once you are determined to become a dermatologist in the future. You can also go for an MCAT prep program to increase your chances of qualifying for the exams at once. 

Admission Process

Getting admission in dermatology is not an easy task. The Sooner you make your mind to become a dermatologist better it will be for you to work in the direction as the candidate has to keep their grades high from high school. And, you need to score well in the MCAT exams (Medical college admission exam), which is not an easy exam. It is a computer-based exam that aims to analyze your critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Even after getting into a medical college, you need to complete USMLE. One should plan to clear the first part of it after the second year of college and the second part after the third year of college.  

There are several colleges that you can aim for to pursue dermatology, these are: 

  1. Stanford University 
  2. University of Pennsylvania
  3. University of California, San Francisco 
  4. New York University
  5. University of Michigan
  6. Emory university
  7. Columbia university 
  8. Thomas Jefferson University
  9. University of Pittsburgh 
  10. John Hopkins Medical Schools

Types of Dermatologist

There are different types of dermatologists. They are super specialized in their corresponding work. Some of the popular types of dermatologist are;

  • Dermatopathologist – A  dermatopathologist is a master of both dermatology and pathology. The study of skin pathology and analyze different skin disorders. They examine different skin diseases and develop diagnoses for them. 

  • Immune Dermatologist – Their job is to diagnose and treat people’s dermatological problems by the defective responses of the body’s immune system. 

  • Teledermatologist – In this, the dermatologist uses telemedicine to cure the disease. They use many telecommunication technologies for the treatment of their patients. 

  • Pediatric Dermatologist – The pediatric dermatologist treats children. They have to cure different skin-related problems of children like psoriasis, acne, eczema, etc.

  • Dermatoepidemiology –  It is the study of skin disease at the population level. One of its main concerns is the determination of the global burden of skin disease. 

  • Cosmetic Surgeon – This is the most difficult type of dermatology. This includes different types of surgery to improve or correct physical features. The different kinds of surgery include liposuction, rhinoplasty, etc. they also treat accidental burn victims to help them reconstruct their damaged body areas. 

Jobs and Career

It is one of the most highly ranked specializations in the medicine branch due to its increasing demand worldwide. There is a wide spectrum and opportunities as people are becoming more concerned about their skin problems. A dermatologist has normal working hours and, of course, no emergency cases hence less stress. This job offers you flexibility as you can practice clinical or cosmetics or both. They can work either in their own clinic or reputed hospitals. One can also work as a dermatology professor and make a teaching career. After this degree, one can also go for research work.

Some job profiles are:

  • Skin specialist
  • Dermatology professor
  • Hair clinics
  • Dermatology consultant
  • Medical representative.


As we all know that the demands of dermatologists are increasing, it has become one of the highest-paid medical specialties. A dermatologist can earn well depending upon location, experience, and knowledge. As we all know, experience is a very important aspect of any medical career in this also the salary increases with the experience. Salary depends upon experience, work, and proficiency. 

In the US, the salary of a dermatologist is around $300,000 a year but it can vary from city to city.  Some of them are listed below: 

  1. San francisco – $380,541 annually   
  2. Fremont – $365,530 annually 
  3. San Jose – $357,616 annually 
  4. Alexandria – $354,977 annually

These are rough figures as reported by dermatologists working in these areas. You can also expect to increase your salary by taking additional certifications and skills. 


In conclusion, dermatology is a very decent career option. Its demand is increasing day by day. And with the right knowledge, experience, and work, one can earn beyond limits. A dermatologist has a wide spectrum of job opportunities, and with extra training in surgical methods and sub-specialty practices, one can make himself more exceptionally skilled. Dermatological clinics also sell skincare products, thus making them a source of extra income. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Is it hard to become a dermatologist? Dermatology is one of the most difficult branches of medicine. It takes 12 years of study and practice to become a dermatologist. 

  • Is dermatology a stressful job? No, Dermatology is very flexible and less stressful as compared to other branches of medicine like oncology. In general, there are much fewer emergency cases except the cosmetic surgeons who treat accidental burns victims. 

  • What should I choose as a major in dermatology? Students can opt for subjects like science, calculus, psychology, anatomy, and physiology as their major as the aim is to keep the grades high. You can choose any other subject of your likings. 

  • Is it expensive to become a dermatologist? As it takes a period of 12 years to become a dermatologist, the cost can get high due to that. The average price one needs to pay for a dermatology school in the USA could lie between $35,218- $59,339 (for 8 years).   

  • How long is a dermatology fellowship program? The duration of the fellowship program is generally 1 year long, but it may vary in different countries and as per the skills required in the program. 

  • How long does a dermatologist have to work a day? Dermatologist’s work hours are similar to other doctors. It is also a 9:00 to 5:00 job. In some cases, dermatologists are also offered evening shifts and weekend hours for work. 

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A Career in Dermatology or A Career As A Dermatologist

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