Sometimes the hardest tasks have to do with looking within ourselves. And we're not talking about soul-searching. Whatever we eat goes through a 25-foot (7.62 meter) journey in our digestive tract, and when problems arise, there's one kind of doctor we can go to for help -- the gastroenterologist -- also known as a GI doctor. These doctors specialize in the process that most of us wish would remain mysterious -- the body's digestion.
Nobody likes to talk about or describe their digestive problem. Whether it has to do with gas, abnormal stools or a pain in the rear, GIs diagnose and treat some of the most uncomfortable and embarrassing of ailments. So you can bet that the GI's patients aren't always happy to see him.
On top of it all, it's not easy to become a GI. These doctors have to go through four years of medical school, three years of residency and two to four years of a fellowship to become full-fledged gastroenterologists [source: AGA].
Why put yourself through so much grueling training for what's sure to be an aromatic job? Well, if helping people isn't enough of an incentive, it doesn't hurt that GIs make a handsome salary. Most GIs make between $250,000 and $400,000 a year -- not too crappy [source: Salary.com].