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Survey shows gender differences are factor when surgeons in training choose a subspecialty
Date:11/9/2007

CHICAGO (November 9, 2007) A gender difference exists among surgeons who choose a surgical subspecialty, particularly when they evaluate the factors that may influence their career choice, according to results of a new survey published in the November issue of the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. The survey revealed that a significantly higher percentage of women than men were influenced by their perception of the lifestyle associated with their career choice. These findings suggest that general surgical residency programs might improve efforts to recruit women for subspecialty training by addressing the perception of the lifestyle associated with choosing a subspecialty surgical career.

Typically, surgery has been viewed as having an uncontrollable lifestyle with higher work hour demands. However, it is becoming evident through similar types of surveys that both men and women are placing a higher priority on personal and family time and seeking ways to shape their careers to accommodate these desires," said Jaime H. McCord, MD, general surgery resident at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Over the past 20 years, the number of women has increased across many medical fields, including general surgery. Yet despite these advances, of the approximately 26,300 practicing general surgeons in the US, only 12 percent are women.

The field of surgery and the majority of surgical residencies have been implementing changes to improve the "lifestyles" of surgeons. That's why it is important for surgeons, both male and female, to model a balanced lifestyle to medical students and promote it in surgical residents if we are to continue to recruit high caliber women, as well as men, into surgery, and especially subspecialty fields," McCord added.

The University of Wisconsin general surgery residency program developed and distributed via email a 32-item Web based survey to 99 graduates (74 respondents) between the years
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Contact: Sally Garneski
pressinquiry@facs.org
312-202-5409
Weber Shandwick Worldwide
Source:Eurekalert

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