Have you ever been fascinated by the complexity of the human brain and its functions?

Do you aspire to become a neurosurgeon and make a difference in people’s lives?

If that’s the case, you’ve come to the right place! This step-by-step guide will teach you everything you need to know about becoming a neurosurgeon, including the qualifications, education, skills required, career opportunities, and earning potential.

Start reading the blog now to learn more about how to become a neurosurgeon and what it takes to pursue a career in this field!


Who is a Neurosurgeon

A neurosurgeon is a medical specialist who performs surgery on the nervous system, which includes the brain, spinal cord, and nerves in the body’s parts.

These doctors are trained to diagnose and treat things like tumors, infections, degenerative diseases, birth defects, and injuries.

They work closely with other medical professionals, such as neurologists, radiologists, and oncologists, to provide the best possible care for their patients.


What does a Neurosurgeon do: Roles and Responsibilities

Neurosurgery is a highly specialized field that deals with the diagnosis and surgical treatment of nervous system conditions. 

Here are the key roles and responsibilities of a neurosurgeon:

Diagnosis and treatment of neurological disorders: 

A neurosurgeon is responsible for diagnosing and treating neurological disorders affecting the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerves.

Performing surgical procedures: 

Performing surgical procedures to remove tumors, repair injuries, or treat neurological conditions is an important part of a neurosurgeon’s job.

Collaboration with other health care professionals: 

A neurosurgeon needs to work with other health care professionals, like neurologists, oncologists, and radiologists, to give patients the best care possible.

Patient education and counseling: 

Patients and their families must be educated and counseled by a neurosurgeon about neurosurgical treatments and procedures.

Conducting research and clinical trials: 

Neurosurgeons are also in charge of doing research and clinical trials to improve the field of neurosurgery.

Keeping up with the latest technologies and techniques: 

Neurosurgeons, like any other medical specialty, must stay current on the latest neurosurgery technologies and techniques

Checkout: Step by step guide to become a doctor

Types of Neurosurgeon

There are various types of neurosurgeons based on their area of specialization. Here are a few examples of the most common types:

1. Vascular neurosurgeons: 

Vascular neurosurgeons are experts in treating conditions that affect the blood vessels in the brain and spinal cord, like aneurysms and arteriovenous malformations.

2. Pediatric neurosurgeons: 

Neurosurgeons who work with children treat brain tumors, hydrocephalus, and spina bifida, among other neurological conditions.

3. Oncology neurosurgeons: 

Oncological neurosurgeons are neurosurgeons who focus on treating brain and spinal cord tumors with surgery.

4. Functional neurosurgeons: 

These types of neurosurgeons treat neurological conditions like epilepsy and movement disorders with surgery.

5. Spinal neurosurgeons: 

These types of  neurosurgeons treat problems with the spinal cord, like herniated discs and spinal stenosis.

6. Traumatology:

Trauma neurosurgeons are neurosurgeons who focus on treating brain and spinal cord injuries caused by accidents, falls, or other traumatic events.

7. Neurointensivists:

Neurointensivists are neurosurgeons who are experts in taking care of critically ill patients and have neurological problems like brain injuries and strokes. 


Skills Required to Become a Neurosurgeon

To become a neurosurgeon, one must possess a certain set of skills and abilities. Here are some of the skills required to become a neurosurgeon:

  • Strong academic background in science and mathematics
  • Excellent hand-eye coordination and dexterity
  • Critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and handle stressful situations with patients
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Attention to detail and strong observational skills
  • Ability to make quick decisions and think on your feet
  • Dedication, hard work, and perseverance to succeed in a highly competitive field.

These skills are crucial for success in the field of neurosurgery and can be developed through education, training, and hands-on experience.



The eligibility criteria for becoming a neurosurgeon vary depending on the country and educational institution. However, in India, the following are some eligibility requirements:

10+2 Education:

A candidate must have completed their 10+2 education from a recognized board with Physics, Chemistry, and Biology as their main subjects.

Bachelor’s Degree: 

After completing 10+2, a candidate must get a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) degree or something similar from a recognized university.

Medical Council of India (MCI) Registration: 

A candidate must be registered with the Medical Council of India (MCI) or the state medical council.

Postgraduate Degree: 

Following completion of the MBBS, a candidate must pursue a postgraduate degree in neurosurgery or its equivalent from a recognized institution.


How to Become a Neurosurgeon in India? A Step-by-Step Guide

If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a neurosurgeon in India, check out the below step-by-step process:

Step 1: Complete 10+2 Education

To pursue a career in neurosurgery, a candidate must have completed their 10+2 education from a recognized board, with Physics, Chemistry, and Biology as their main subjects.

Step 2: Clear the medical entrance exams

To get admission to a medical college for an MBBS degree, you must pass medical entrance exams such as NEET, AIIMS, JIPMER, or other state-level exams. A postgraduate degree in neurosurgery can be pursued after completing the MBBS degree.

Step 3: Bachelor’s Degree in Medicine

After completing 10+2, a candidate must get a Bachelor’s Degree in Medicine (MBBS) from a recognized medical college.

Step 4: Complete an Internship

After completing the Bachelor’s degree, a candidate must complete a one-year internship in a recognized hospital or medical institution.

Step 5: Postgraduate Degree in Neurosurgery

After the internship, the candidate must go to a recognized medical school to get a postgraduate degree in neurosurgery (MCh).

Step 6: Residency Program

After getting a postgraduate degree, a candidate may have to go through a residency program to learn more about neurosurgery and gain hands-on experience.

Step 7 : Fellowship Program:

A candidate could also choose to go through a fellowship program to specialize in a certain area of neurosurgery, like pediatric neurosurgery or neuro-oncology.

Step 8: Get your Neurosurgeon License

In India, people who want to be neurosurgeons must first get a license from the Medical Council of India (MCI). 


Top Colleges/Institutes in India for Neurosurgeon

Here are some of the top medical colleges and institutes in India to become a neurosurgeon.

  • All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi
  • Christian Medical College (CMC), Vellore
  • National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore
  • Maulana Azad Medical College (MAMC), New Delhi.
  • Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh
  • Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), Trivandrum
  • Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), Pune
  • Sanjay gandhi postgraduate institute of medical sciences
  • Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry
  • King George’s Medical University, Lucknow
  • Institute of Neurological Sciences, Kolkata


Career Opportunities for Neurosurgeon

A career in neurosurgery offers a wide range of opportunities for those who complete the necessary education and training. 

Here are some of the career opportunities for neurosurgeons:

  • University and hospital research positions
  • consulting roles in medicine
  • Opportunities for teaching and mentoring
  • Healthcare startup entrepreneurship
  • Participation in public health policy and advocacy
  • Hospital administration leadership positions
  • Telemedicine and consulting through online health platforms
  • Nonprofit involvement in global health initiatives
  • Private clinics
  • Work in the pharmaceutical or medical device industry.


Neurosurgeon Doctor Salary and earning sources

As of 2023, here are some details on the salary and earning sources for a neurosurgeon.

Salary in India: A neurosurgeon’s salary in India varies according to years of experience. A new neurosurgeon can expect to earn between 1.5 and 2.5 lakh INR per month, while an experienced neurosurgeon can expect to earn up to 12 lakh INR per month.

Salary in the United States: The average annual salary for a neurosurgeon in the United States is around $650,000.

Salary in Canada: The average annual salary for a neurosurgeon in Canada is approximately C$470,000.

A neurosurgeon’s earnings can come from a variety of sources, including private clinics, teaching, online consultations, and so on.

It should be noted that these figures are based on general averages and may differ depending on location, experience, and other factors. Source: Average Neurosurgeon salary


Pros and Cons 

Here are the pros and cons of becoming a neurosurgeon:


  • Neurosurgeons are among the highest paid professionals 
  • Opportunity to make a positive impact on patients’ lives
  • Research opportunities
  • The demanding role of a neurosurgeon


  • high-stress job with long hours and demanding responsibilities
  • Risk of medical malpractice lawsuits
  • High cost of education
  • Extensive training
  • Limited work-life balance



Becoming a neurosurgeon is a difficult but rewarding journey that requires dedication, hard work, and perseverance. This guide has provided you with a step-by-step plan for achieving your goal of becoming a neurosurgeon in India.

We have covered all of the necessary details to guide you through this process, from the required education, skills, and job roles and responsibilities, pros and cons, to salary expectations.

Keep in mind that this field requires a significant amount of dedication, but the personal and professional rewards are well worth the effort.

If you have any questions or comments regarding how to become a neurosurgeon, then please leave your query or comment below.



Is it difficult to become a neurosurgeon? 

Yes, becoming a neurosurgeon is considered one of the most difficult and challenging career paths in the field of medicine. It requires a high level of academic excellence, dedication, and commitment to long hours of study and practice.


Can I become a neurosurgeon without an MBBS? 

No, it is not possible to become a neurosurgeon without completing an MBBS degree. MBBS is the minimum educational requirement to become a doctor in India.


Do neurosurgeons get free time? 

Neurosurgeons have demanding work schedules and often work long hours, including nights and weekends. However, like any other profession, they do get some free time, which they can use to pursue their hobbies or spend time with family and friends.


How long does it take to become a neurosurgeon? 

It takes around 14–15 years of education and training after completing 10+2 education to become a neurosurgeon.


How much does it cost to become a neurosurgeon? 

The cost of becoming a neurosurgeon varies depending on the country and educational institution. In India, the cost of completing an MBBS degree ranges from Rs. 10–25 lakhs in government colleges and Rs. 50–75 lakhs in private colleges. Post-graduate courses in neurosurgery can cost up to Rs. 1–2 crores.


Neurosurgeon salary in the USA 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for neurosurgeons in the United States is around $409,665.


Neurosurgeon salary at AIIMS, India 

The salary of a neurosurgeon at AIIMS, India, ranges from Rs. 70,000 to Rs. 1.5 lakhs per month, depending on their experience and seniority.


Neurosurgeon salary in Canada 

According to Payscale, the average salary for a neurosurgeon in Canada is around CAD 397,000 per year.


Neurosurgeon salary in Dubai 

According to Payscale, the average salary for a neurosurgeon in Dubai is around AED 975,000 per year.


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About the Author: Sanjay Hota

Meet Sanjay Hota, an edtech content writer with 4+ years of experience. Sanjay creates engaging content for educational institutions and edtech companies, and in his spare time, he helps students and graduates find clarity about their career prospects through his career counselling programme.