MD vs. PhD vs. MD/PhD : what's best for research?

Paul N Hengen pnh at
Mon Dec 20 13:07:55 EST 1993

In article <2ett3e$a30 at>
kclement at (kevin clements) writes:

> One thing that hasn't really been touched upon yet, so far as I can
> tell, is the type of research you want to do, applied or basic
> ("pure").  Each has a different goal (though not, perhaps, a different
> ultimate goal in biomedical research).  If you are interested in the
> applied end product, then you may find an M.D. a bit more suitable (as
> one respondant hinted).  If, however, you'd rather leave the curing of
> ailments to others, and focus only on the science, you will be better
> served by the greater focus on the "scientific method" provided by the
> typical Ph.D. program.

Working at a research institute affords a slightly different perspective.
The degree to persue depends on your deep seeded motivation for doing
science/medicine. An M.D. I was dating once said to me, "I am limited to
only helping one person at a time for the short term. Your research has the
potential to help millions of people for many many years to come." [Thanks
Lizanne!] Matt, this may be something to think about when deciding what you
want to do with your career. I think we are working for the same goal from
different angles.


* Paul N. Hengen, Ph.D.                           /--------------------------/*
* National Cancer Institute                       |Internet: pnh at |*
* Laboratory of Mathematical Biology              |   Phone: (301) 846-5581  |*
* Frederick Cancer Research and Development Center|     FAX: (301) 846-5598  |*
* Frederick, Maryland 21702-1201 USA              /--------------------------/*

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