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Healthgrades for ProfessionalsThe 10 Wealthiest Physician Specialties

Nearly six out of 10 doctors report a net worth exceeding $1 million dollars.

The latest Wealth and Debt report by Medscape provides an in-depth analysis of the financial status of physicians across various specialties in the United States. The report, surveying more than 10,000 doctors, reveals intriguing trends in net worth, salary, and the influence of factors such as gender and race on wealth accumulation. Here’s a detailed breakdown of the findings:

Key Points:

  • Overall Wealth of Physicians: 59% of respondents have a net worth exceeding $1 million; 29% are worth more than $2 million; 11% have a net worth of $5 million or more.
  • Top Wealth Specialties: Plastic Surgery (31%), Orthopedics (28%), Gastroenterology (25%), Urology (23%), Cardiology (22%), Ophthalmology (18%), Radiology (17%), Oncology (17%), Pathology (14%), Ob/Gyn (14%).
  • Gender and Racial Gaps: Fewer women (25%) than men (32%) reported a net worth between $2-5 million; 63% of white doctors report a seven-figure net worth, compared to 37% of Blacks, 58% of Asian Americans, and 51% of Hispanic physicians.
  • Lowest Net Worth Specialties: Family Medicine (35%), Rheumatology (33%), Public Health & Preventive Medicine (33%), Physical Medicine & Rehab (32%), Neurology (32%), Nephrology (30%), Pediatrics (30%), Internal Medicine (29%), TIE: Ob/Gyn, Dermatology, Psychiatry (27%).

Additional Points:

  • Average Annual Salary: The average annual salary for all physicians is $352,000, up roughly 4% from last year.
  • Motivation Factors: 75% of doctors find fulfillment in making the world a better place and their relationships with patients; only 10% chose “making good money” as their primary motivation.


  • The report highlights a generally prosperous financial landscape for physicians, with disparities in wealth across specialties and demographic groups. The motivation for many remains patient care and societal impact rather than financial gain.

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Did You Know?
According to various studies, female physicians earn significantly less than their male counterparts, with the pay gap estimated to be around 25-30%. This disparity exists across various specialties and career stages, even after adjusting for factors like hours worked, experience, and specialty choice.

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