Engineering combined with Medicine (M.D./Ph.D.)?

In summary, MD/PhD programs in biomedical engineering are available at various universities, but they are highly competitive and usually focus on biology-related research. It is possible to pursue a PhD in engineering and then an MD, or to find a medical school with a strong biomedical engineering program. Both options can take 7-9 years to complete, followed by a 4-5 year residency. Boston University is one university with a dedicated biomedical engineering department.
  • #1
srnj222
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I am currently an undergraduate at dartmouth college, in love with both medicine and engineering, and I've been looking for a way to do both. A friend mentioned he had heard about combined M.D./Ph/D programs in biomedical engineering, which sound awesome, but everywhere i look, I can only find these programs with a biology related Ph.D., none in engineering fields. Does anyone know naything about sich programs, where they are good, not so good, and where I might find more info on them?:confused:
 
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  • #2
I'd think a number of schools offer that kind of combo. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=bioengineering+M.D.+Ph.D. yielded some particulars... but I'd look at this link that organizes the programs by state and contains links to the programs:
http://www.aamc.org/research/dbr/mdphd/programs.htm

These are very competitive programs to get into... my sister went through one at the University of Michigan (finished a few years ago, but still in some extended residency... be aware that this is a 7-9 year process). I don't know how many schools she applied to, but I believe she went through the interview process at four schools, and she was accepted into the program at two or three. U of M does mention "biomedical engineering" as an option.
 
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  • #3
MD/PhD programs are primarily geared towards creating physicians who can function as medical research scientists. Generally most of that research is directed towards the biology related fields. Most of these MD/PhD positions are grant-funded, and may have restrictions on what kinds of PhD programs students are allowed to participate in.

If you can find a medical school associated with a university that has a biomedical engineering program (this will exclude a large number of medical schools right off the bat), and can convince the directors of the MD/PhD program to let you do the PhD portion of the in the biomed department (you would have to convince them this is a good thing), then you can probably do your MD/PhD(Eng). Surf the net and find a few promising schools, and then contact the program directors to see if a PhD(Eng) is a possibility.

The other alternative is to do a PhD(Eng), then get into a med school for your MD. A lot of physicians have ended up doing this kind of thing, deciding on a career change at some point in their life. I know a couple of MDs that started off with engineering or physics in their previous life and then went on to do an MD later.

The benefit of this approach is that you can choose a school with a strong Biomed program and then choose another school with a good MD program that fits your style. The other approach may get you a good program in one field but not so much in the other, or two mediocre programs.

Either route will end up taking up anywhere from 7-9 years of your life. And then there's a 4-5 year residency on top of that to consider when you're finished.
 
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  • #4
Boston University has a whole department devoted to biomedical engineering, and their hockey team isn't too bad either.

http://www.bu.edu/dbin/bme/
 
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1. What is an M.D./Ph.D. program?

An M.D./Ph.D. program is a combined degree program that allows students to earn both a medical degree (M.D.) and a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) in a specific field of study, such as engineering. This program typically takes 7-8 years to complete and prepares students for careers in both medicine and research.

2. What are the benefits of pursuing an M.D./Ph.D.?

There are several benefits to pursuing an M.D./Ph.D. First, it allows individuals to become both a physician and a researcher, giving them a unique skill set and perspective. This can open up a variety of career opportunities in fields such as academia, industry, and government. Additionally, having both degrees can also increase earning potential and job security.

3. How does the curriculum differ from a traditional M.D. or Ph.D. program?

An M.D./Ph.D. program combines the curriculum of both a medical degree and a doctoral degree. This means students will take courses in medicine, such as anatomy, physiology, and clinical rotations, as well as courses in their chosen engineering field, such as biomedical engineering or bioinformatics. The program typically includes research rotations and a dissertation, similar to a traditional Ph.D. program.

4. What are some potential research areas for those in an M.D./Ph.D. program in engineering?

There are many potential research areas for those in an M.D./Ph.D. program in engineering. Some examples include developing new medical devices or technologies, studying and improving drug delivery systems, using engineering principles to better understand disease processes, and creating computational models to improve medical treatments. The possibilities are endless and depend on the student's specific interests and the resources of their program.

5. Are there specific admissions requirements for M.D./Ph.D. programs in engineering?

Admission requirements for M.D./Ph.D. programs in engineering may vary slightly from school to school, but generally, applicants will need to have a strong background in both science and engineering. This may include coursework in biology, chemistry, physics, and engineering principles. Many programs also require applicants to have research experience and strong letters of recommendation. Additionally, students will need to take the MCAT and/or GRE exams and may be required to participate in interviews as part of the application process.

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