As a Medical Oncologist, one works as a doctor who treats patients with cancer and also as a researcher who researches and develops new drugs for cancer treatment in a laboratory.
Oncologists find and fight cancerous tumors. Medical Oncologists treat cancer with chemotherapy, utilizing strong drugs to kill cancer cells. Surgical Oncologists surgically remove tumors. Radiation Oncologists use high-energy X-rays to destroy cancer cells from the inside. All Oncologists examine patients, evaluate symptoms, screen for and diagnose cancers, offer prognoses, recommend treatments, prescribe drugs, and administer therapies.
To practice as a physician in the United States one must pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE). To become board certified in a specialty, an M.D. or D.O. may have to spend up to seven years in residency training. Upon completion of that residency or after one to two years of practice, he or she will have to take a final examination in order to become certified by a member board of the American Board of Medical Specialists (ABMS) or the American Osteopathic Association (AOA). Certification in a sub-specialty may require an additional one or two year residency.
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