Best and worst paid doctors: Survey

More and more U.S. doctors are regretting their career choices. According to an annual survey of physician pay called Physician Compensation Survey from Medscape/WebMD this is in spite of the hefty amounts that they make each year. However the survey reveals that some specialities may earn more than others.

The survey of 24,000 physicians showed that highest paid are Radiologists and Orthopedic surgeons at $315,000. Next came Cardiologists at $314,000, Anaesthesiologists and Urologists both at $309,000. Gastroenterologists at $303,000, Oncologists at $295,000, Dermatologists at $283,000, Plastic surgeons and Ophthalmologists at $270,000 came thereafter.

The worst paid are the Pediatricians at $156,000, Family medicine doctors at $158,000, Internal medicine doctors at $165,000, Diabeticians/endocrinologists at $168,000 and Psychiatrists and HIV/infectious disease specialists at $170,000.

In comments accompanying the survey, many physicians said they feared changes in the health care system would mean lower incomes in years to come, Medscape reports.

Maybe that's one reason just 54% said they would choose a career in medicine again, down from 69% percent in 2011. For now, just 11% say they consider themselves “rich” -- and 45% agree that “my income probably qualifies me as rich, but I have so many debts and expenses that I don't feel rich.”

Female doctors make 40% less than male doctors, although female primary care doctors make only 23% less than their male peers. One possible reason could be that female doctors spend more time with patients than male doctors do.

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.


Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Mandal, Ananya. (2018, August 23). Best and worst paid doctors: Survey. News-Medical. Retrieved on November 28, 2021 from

  • MLA

    Mandal, Ananya. "Best and worst paid doctors: Survey". News-Medical. 28 November 2021. <>.

  • Chicago

    Mandal, Ananya. "Best and worst paid doctors: Survey". News-Medical. (accessed November 28, 2021).

  • Harvard

    Mandal, Ananya. 2018. Best and worst paid doctors: Survey. News-Medical, viewed 28 November 2021,


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
You might also like... ×
Expert explores how our sleeping patterns can be linked to cognitive decline