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Technology and competing subspecialties cut into general surgery compensation

The juxtaposition of declining physician numbers and dips in Medicare fees usually causes physician compensation to stall. This is true enough for general surgeons. However, the growing number of surgical subspecialties and technological advances may cause these providers to become so scarce that their pay may actually begin to increase. In 2005, trends in several compensation surveys showed general surgeons' compensation increasing by 1.41%-8.89%. Compared to numerous other specialties, these pay increases are marginal.