Neurosurgeons 101


A Summary of the Job

A neurosurgeon:

  • performs operations
  • treats brain and nervous-system diseases

This helps society because:

  • these procedures save lives
  • saving lives is always good

For this, the median salary of a neurosurgeon as of 2016 is $395,000.


  • Get to save lives
  • Job earns a lot of money

  • Working environment will be calm (can’t argue during surgery)

  • Can help a lot of people

  • Workplace will be clean. No matter what


  • Job earns a lot of money… until someone dies and the family tries to sue

  • Must work very odd hours

  • Must be ready at all times of the day to be back in the hospital

  • Will not be able to get good sleep

  • People may die during surgery

A neurosurgeon will typically work with nurses at the hospital, and surgical technologists.

How it Relates to STEM

Science: a neurosurgeon must know about a human's body, a type of science called anatomy

Technology: technology is anything that makes life more convenient, and the tools a neurosurgeon uses during surgery are a part of this

Engineering: N/A

Math: good for counting money so the bills can get paid


To become a neurosurgeon, certain requirements must be met in terms of college schooling. A person must:

  • graduate from undergraduate school with a bachelor's degree (4 years, an average of $32,405 per year if attending a private school)
  • apply to medical school
  • finish medical school (4 years, $23,893 to $32,405 per year)
  • complete an internship (1 year)
  • apply for a residency training program at an academic medical center through The National Residency Matching Program
  • complete residency training program
  • take a test to get certified by the American Board of Neurological Surgery

For a neurosurgeon, a science degree that focuses on the body is a good idea to major in, like anatomy, human physiology, health sciences, and human biology.

Good medical schools for a neurosurgeon to go to are:

  • University of Rochester Medical Center
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
  • University of Miami School of Medicine
  • Yale University School of Medicine
  • University of California, San Francisco Medical Center.

Skills Needed

Aside from math and science related skills, a neurosurgeon needs to have the ability to:

  • make decisions- need to be able to consider the pros and cons of actions and choose the best one
  • listen- need to be able to give attention to what others say and understand the points they make, asking appropriate questions and not interrupting
  • do some complicated problem solving- need to be able to identify complicated problems, review related information to make and weigh options, and put in action solution
  • think critically- need to be able to use logic to reason and identify the strengths/weaknesses of solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems
  • read- need to be able to read and understand written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents
  • work calmly under stress- need to be able to because any surgeon will be under pressure and its important to still make clear headed decisions and work calmly before the patient dies

A Day in the Life of a Neurosurgeon

3:00 AM- phone call from the hospital. Someone got in an accident

3:15 AM- arrive at hospital. Prepare for surgery

3:20 AM- enter surgery. Drill a burr hole or something

7:00 AM- finish surgery. Wash up

7:05 AM- walk to the ER and talk with the family

7:20 AM- attempt to leave and get breakfast

7:21 AM- another phone call from hospital. Goodbye, breakfast

7:23 AM- wash up for surgery

7:28 AM- enter surgery. Do what is necessary

12:00 PM- lunch and then to a meeting

9:00 PM- home at last

Important Neurosurgeons

Click Here

For Additional Information Regarding Neurosurgeons

Click Here

For More Additional Information Regarding Neurosurgeons

Click Here

For Even More Additional Information Regarding Neurosurgeons


"Department of Neurosurgery." How Do I Become a Neurosurgeon?N.p., n.d. Web. 02 June 2016. <>.

Gigi. "Phone Calls, Phone Calls, Phone Calls." Web log post.NeuCognition. Blogger, 1 Dec. 2012. Web. 02 June 2016. <>.

Keller, Amy. "Neurosurgeon Shortage in Florida: Crisis Averted." Florida Trend. Trend Magazines Inc., 6 Sept. 2011. Web. 02 June 2016. <>.

Kutz, Scott, and Patrick O'Leary. "Harvey Cushing: A Historical Vignette." Harvey Cushing: A Historical Vignette. Ouisiana State University Health Sciences Center, n.d. Web. 02 June 2016. <>.

"M. Gazi Yaşargil: Neurosurgery's Man of the Century." National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, Nov. 1999. Web. 02 June 2016. <>.

"Sir Victor Horsley (1857-1916): Pioneer of Neurological Surgery."National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, Mar. 2002. Web. 02 June 2016. <>.