How to Become an Anesthesiologist? How Long Does It Take?

Anesthesiologists give anesthesia to the patients and lessen their pain. The medical doctors decide the type of anesthesia for different types of treatment.

Doctors, surgeons, surgical technologists, nurses, and other medical staff integrates their services before, during, and after the completion of treatment.

The service of an anesthesiologist determines the patients’ life and health. In order to become an anesthesiologist, you have to undergo extensive training and procure educational qualifications.

Integrating psychology with your training will help you to understand emotional intelligence. With emotional intelligence, you will understand the reason behind the pain of the individual better.

When you treat the patient in a better way, you are likely to get a good job opportunity in the future.

Different magazines in the United States provide information about the job openings for Anesthesiologists.

You can subscribe to journals like the American Society of Anesthesiologists or the American Medical Association.

Anesthesiology teaches the prospective anesthesiologists about the different types of anesthesia and their consequences on the human body.

An individual can only practice anesthesiology if they have the required Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) Degree.

But how can you become an anesthesiologist? Moreover, how long does it take to become an anesthesiologist?

This article will discuss in detail the answers to such questions.


The reports of the Bureau of Labour Statistics show that anesthesiology is a lucrative job option for the people.

However, the incomes of anesthesiologists are modified due to various factors. Such factors entail the geographical location, pieces of training, and the experience of the anesthesiologists.

The salary according to the 25th percentile is $340,600 and the wage of the 50th percentile is $393,200.

But, the incomes of anesthesiologists in the 75th and 90th percentile is $445,700 and $493,499, respectively.

However, according to the Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS), the approximate income of the anesthesiologist in the US is $261,730 per year.

Also Read: How to Become a Physical Therapist? How Long Does It Take?


Bachelor’s Degree

You cannot pursue anesthesiology without a bachelor’s degree. A bachelor’s degree helps anesthesiologists to get entry into a Medical College.

But the individuals should make sure to get such a degree in the related subjects.

Such domains include Biology, Social Sciences, or other fields. However, procuring the Bachelor’s degree should not be the only aim of the students.

The prospective anesthesiologists should perform excellently during the program. They should be able to achieve a GPA of approximately 3.5 to 4 to get entry into a Medical College.

The limit of GPA is set by the American Medical Association (AMA).

Medical College Admission Test

Before graduating from an undergraduate program, the students can apply for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).

Securing higher marks in the MCAT will help you to get an entry into a reputed Medical College.

You can gain experience and augment your possibilities of getting a medical school by applying for various internships.

Also Read: Difference Between an EMT and A Paramedic: Training, Salary, Education, Scope

Medical School

Medical degreeAfter adhering to the above process, you can get an entry into a reputed medical school. The medical school proffers you education for four years.

During the first 2 years in school, teachers teach you about the theory and do laboratory practices.

On the other hand, during the last 2 years, the students work with professionals to gain experience and refine their skill set.

They have cognizance of various subjects practically. Overall, a medical school serves as a base to prepare the students for residency in anesthetics.

Take up The USMLE

In medical school, the individuals should prepare for USMLE. USMLE stands for the United States Medical Licencing Examination.

As the name suggests, qualifying for this exam helps the students to obtain a medical license.

The United States Medical Licencing Examination has three parts. The candidates should enroll for the first 2 parts during Medical College.

However, they can clear the third part only after they have procured their doctor of medical (MD) degree.

Also Read: Postsecondary Nondegree Award: Definition and Programs

Residency Program

The residency program in anesthesiology is a four-year program. In the first year, the prospective anesthesiologists learn various theoretical knowledge along with hospital rotations.

On the other hand, during the last three years, anesthesiologists get a detailed insight into anesthesia. This includes theoretical as well as practical knowledge.

You can choose any subject according to your preferences like obstetric anesthesiology in management or pediatric anesthesiology.

The National Residency Matching Program (NRMP) supervises the residency procedure. With the aid of this program, each anesthesiologist gets a residency.

The residency program has proficient professionals who teach to the best of their potentials to the individuals.

State Licence

anesthesiaThe prospective anesthesiologists can practice the profession only when they have the relevant State Licence.

Guidelines issued by the USMLE at the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME) tell the methods to procure the license.

The state medical board proffers the license to the individuals. However, individuals can receive a license only after completing certain requirements.

First of all, they should have completed all the above-mentioned procedures. Also, the individuals should have given the best of their potential and excelled in the domain.

Board Certification

Procuring the state license is mandatory for anesthesiologists to practice the profession. However, acquiring board certification is not compulsory.

It only increases the possibility of getting a good job opportunity for the anesthesiologists.

The American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) and the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) helps people to get board certification.

The prospective anesthesiologists should clear the various exams to get board certification. These examinations include the APPLIED exam, the ADVANCED exam, and the BASIC exam.

After the individuals complete their residency, they can qualify for the ADVANCED exam. It helps the prospective anesthesiologist to learn the precocious aspects of clinical anesthesiology.

On the other hand, the BASIC exam helps students to learn the scientific aspects of anesthesiology. You can qualify for this exam after your 2nd year in residency.

After passing the ADVANCED exam, the students take up the APPLIED examination. It has various oral and clinical examinations.

The students have the opportunity to pass this exam after seven years of completion of their residency.

Also Read: How to Become a Massage Therapist? How Long Does It Take?

Time Duration

It takes more than 10 years for an individual to become an anesthesiologist. This is because the individual gets enrolled for several years in various pieces of training.

These include a bachelor’s degree, medical school, and residency. However, there are some programs that have combined six-year medical school programs and undergraduate programs.

Enrolling in such programs will help you to curtail the time duration and thus initiate your career quickly. Apart from that, additional time is required for board certification and residency procedures.

Functions of An Anesthesiologist

anesthesiologistFirst of all, an anesthesiologist prepares the patient for anesthesia and checks the historical records of the patient. Then, they administer anesthesia to the patient before the treatment.

After that, they make sure to verify any important signs while the patient is treated by the medical professionals.

Taking care of patients with any chronic ailments like diabetes and asthma, fibromyalgia, migraine, etc. is also a crucial function of an anesthesiologist.

After the surgery is over, the anesthesiologist ensures that the patient is recovering in the right way. They also inform the doctors and management about the recovery.


There are numerous career opportunities for anesthesiologists. They could work in the physicians’ offices, colleges, schools, or other universities.

While procuring different pieces of training, the prospective anesthesiologists can improve their networking outreach.

This networking outreach will help them to get recruited through various physicians and other recruiters.


  • Efa Yasin, exhibits her witty personality, through her intriguing writings. Her works have been published on various websites, like NOGOZO and THETOPTOURS. With her forte being in English, she has conducted researches and concocted articles on various niches like marketing, travel and tourism, information technology, and many more.

  • As a Humanities undergrad, Anwesha Sen explores her creative side by writing about fields such as finance, education, marketing, and tourism. Her work has been published on various company blogs. She thoroughly enjoys traveling and learning about new cultures. Being a sucker for mysteries, she spends most of her free time watching documentaries on unsolved crimes.

Recommended Articles

Leave a Reply