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The 10 Highest-Paying Physician Careers in 2016

  • Article by:Health Career Center

The chance to earn a huge salary probably wasn’t the number one reason you decided to become a physician. Being a doctor is about so much more: challenging yourself, learning something new each day, and helping others live better, healthier lives.

…That said, the huge salary certainly doesn’t hurt, does it? After all, when you offer some of the most valuable services of any professional in the country, it’s only fair that you earn more for those services.

And according to Forbes magazine, no physicians are more valuable than the ones you’ll see below. Here is its list of the Top 10 highest-paid physicians—all of which feature current career openings at

10. General Surgery

Average base salary: $378,000

General surgeons earn a high salary by any industry standard, not just health care. When you factor in the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ report predicting employment for surgeons to grow 14 percent by 2024, their salaries are likely to rise even more.

9. Pulmonology/Critical Care

Average base salary: $380,000

Smoking may be on the decline in America, but pulmonary and crit care doctors’ salaries aren’t. This could be yet another result of the country’s aging population. 

8. Otolaryngology

Average base salary: $403,000

ENTs are finding plenty of opportunities in both hospital and private practice settings. Either way, they’re big earners, with some topping out at over half a million dollars per year. 

7. Dermatology

Average base salary: $444,000

Those eight years of postsecondary education turned out to be worth every penny. In a busy enough market, an in-demand dermatologist can easily clear $500,000 each year. 

6. Gastroenterology (63)

Average base salary: $458,000

As elderly patients continue to present with higher rates of gastrointestinal issues, these physicians will see their demand rise—and their yearly earnings will rise with it.

5. Urology (72)

Average base salary: $471,000

Urologists have enjoyed a bright job outlook for 12 years now, according to In that time span, they’ve seen job vacancies increase by over 80 percent nationwide.

4. Radiology

Average base salary: $475,000

Imaging technology is advancing at a fast pace, which means radiologists who can keep up are highly valuable. No wonder they earn nearly half a million dollars a year on average.

3. Cardiology (Non-Invasive)

Average base salary: $493,000

Though they may fall behind invasive cardiologists in terms of yearly earnings, non-invasive cardiologists have no reason to complain. A variety of subspecialties make it easy for some cardiologists to push their salaries hundreds of thousands of dollars higher.

2. Orthopedic Surgery

Average base salary: $521,000

America’s new emphasis on preventative care has put a big premium on daily exercise. And that’s created a growing need for musculoskeletal health services, much to orthopedic surgeons’ benefit.

1. Cardiology (Invasive)

Average base salary: $545,000

Base salaries can vary wildly, but one thing is for sure: invasive cardiologists command a hefty paycheck. Top-end earners can bring home over $800,000 in base salary alone.

Didn’t find your career on this list? Not to worry. Whether you’re an invasive cardiologist or a family physician, you can find high-paying openings with the country’s leading employers by searching today.




The information in this article originally appeared on the Forbes website. To read the original article, click here.