Gynecologists provide medical treatment to women, focusing on issues related to the reproductive system. They may perform annual testing and exams, diagnose illnesses and infections, treat hormonal abnormalities, prescribe medication and counsel patients about birth control or fertility options. In addition to delivering babies, obstetricians and gynecologists (OB/GYNs) provide prenatal and postnatal care throughout pregnancy and after childbirth. Gynecologists may choose subspecialties, such as gynecologic oncology, which focuses on cancer related to women's reproductive organs. Gynecology is one of the highest paying specialties in medicine, with employment opportunities in private practice, clinics, hospitals, universities and government agencies.
Gynecologists must have excellent communication skills and an ability to interact with patients and their families, as well as colleagues, administrators and co-workers. They must have up-to-date knowledge of medical and technical advances, a thorough understanding of medical terminology and coding specific to gynecology, and always-current certification and licensure. They need to be able to make decisions quickly and stay calm under pressure. Gynecologists in private practice must also have good business management skills.