Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons

Tait D. Shanafelt, Charles M. Balch, Gerald J. Bechamps, Thomas Russell, Lotte Dyrbye, Daniel Satele, Paul Collicott, Paul J. Novotny, Jeff Sloan, Julie A. Freischlag

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

408 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:: To determine the incidence of burnout among American surgeons and evaluate personal and professional characteristics associated with surgeon burnout. BACKGROUND:: Burnout is a syndrome of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization that leads to decreased effectiveness at work. A limited amount of information exists about the relationship between specific demographic and practice characteristics with burnout among American surgeons. METHODS:: Members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) were sent an anonymous, cross-sectional survey in June 2008. The survey evaluated demographic variables, practice characteristics, career satisfaction, burnout, and quality of life (QOL). Burnout and QOL were measured using validated instruments. RESULTS:: Of the approximately 24,922 surgeons sampled, 7905 (32%) returned surveys. Responders had been in practice 18 years, worked 60 hours per week, and were on call 2 nights/wk (median values). Overall, 40% of responding surgeons were burned out, 30% screened positive for symptoms of depression, and 28% had a mental QOL score >1/2 standard deviation below the population norm. Factors independently associated with burnout included younger age, having children, area of specialization, number of nights on call per week, hours worked per week, and having compensation determined entirely based on billing. Only 36% of surgeons felt their work schedule left enough time for personal/family life and only 51% would recommend their children pursue a career as a physician/surgeon. CONCLUSION:: Burnout is common among American surgeons and is the single greatest predictor of surgeons' satisfaction with career and specialty choice. Additional research is needed to identify individual, organizational, and societal interventions that preserve and promote the mental health of American surgeons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)463-470
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Surgery
Volume250
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2009
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Quality of Life
Demography
Surgeons
Depersonalization
Career Choice
Appointments and Schedules
Mental Health
Cross-Sectional Studies
Depression
Physicians
Incidence
Research
Population
Surveys and Questionnaires

Keywords

  • Burnout
  • Depression
  • Satisfaction
  • Surgeon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

Cite this

Shanafelt, T. D., Balch, C. M., Bechamps, G. J., Russell, T., Dyrbye, L., Satele, D., ... Freischlag, J. A. (2009). Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons. Annals of Surgery, 250(3), 463-470. https://doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0b013e3181ac4dfd

Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons. / Shanafelt, Tait D.; Balch, Charles M.; Bechamps, Gerald J.; Russell, Thomas; Dyrbye, Lotte; Satele, Daniel; Collicott, Paul; Novotny, Paul J.; Sloan, Jeff; Freischlag, Julie A.

In: Annals of Surgery, Vol. 250, No. 3, 09.2009, p. 463-470.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Shanafelt, TD, Balch, CM, Bechamps, GJ, Russell, T, Dyrbye, L, Satele, D, Collicott, P, Novotny, PJ, Sloan, J & Freischlag, JA 2009, 'Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons', Annals of Surgery, vol. 250, no. 3, pp. 463-470. https://doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0b013e3181ac4dfd
Shanafelt TD, Balch CM, Bechamps GJ, Russell T, Dyrbye L, Satele D et al. Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons. Annals of Surgery. 2009 Sep;250(3):463-470. https://doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0b013e3181ac4dfd
Shanafelt, Tait D. ; Balch, Charles M. ; Bechamps, Gerald J. ; Russell, Thomas ; Dyrbye, Lotte ; Satele, Daniel ; Collicott, Paul ; Novotny, Paul J. ; Sloan, Jeff ; Freischlag, Julie A. / Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons. In: Annals of Surgery. 2009 ; Vol. 250, No. 3. pp. 463-470.
@article{d9a639839dd24311ab9738de3ddb9a4a,
title = "Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons",
abstract = "OBJECTIVE:: To determine the incidence of burnout among American surgeons and evaluate personal and professional characteristics associated with surgeon burnout. BACKGROUND:: Burnout is a syndrome of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization that leads to decreased effectiveness at work. A limited amount of information exists about the relationship between specific demographic and practice characteristics with burnout among American surgeons. METHODS:: Members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) were sent an anonymous, cross-sectional survey in June 2008. The survey evaluated demographic variables, practice characteristics, career satisfaction, burnout, and quality of life (QOL). Burnout and QOL were measured using validated instruments. RESULTS:: Of the approximately 24,922 surgeons sampled, 7905 (32{\%}) returned surveys. Responders had been in practice 18 years, worked 60 hours per week, and were on call 2 nights/wk (median values). Overall, 40{\%} of responding surgeons were burned out, 30{\%} screened positive for symptoms of depression, and 28{\%} had a mental QOL score >1/2 standard deviation below the population norm. Factors independently associated with burnout included younger age, having children, area of specialization, number of nights on call per week, hours worked per week, and having compensation determined entirely based on billing. Only 36{\%} of surgeons felt their work schedule left enough time for personal/family life and only 51{\%} would recommend their children pursue a career as a physician/surgeon. CONCLUSION:: Burnout is common among American surgeons and is the single greatest predictor of surgeons' satisfaction with career and specialty choice. Additional research is needed to identify individual, organizational, and societal interventions that preserve and promote the mental health of American surgeons.",
keywords = "Burnout, Depression, Satisfaction, Surgeon",
author = "Shanafelt, {Tait D.} and Balch, {Charles M.} and Bechamps, {Gerald J.} and Thomas Russell and Lotte Dyrbye and Daniel Satele and Paul Collicott and Novotny, {Paul J.} and Jeff Sloan and Freischlag, {Julie A.}",
year = "2009",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1097/SLA.0b013e3181ac4dfd",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "250",
pages = "463--470",
journal = "Annals of Surgery",
issn = "0003-4932",
publisher = "Lippincott Williams and Wilkins",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Burnout and career satisfaction among american surgeons

AU - Shanafelt, Tait D.

AU - Balch, Charles M.

AU - Bechamps, Gerald J.

AU - Russell, Thomas

AU - Dyrbye, Lotte

AU - Satele, Daniel

AU - Collicott, Paul

AU - Novotny, Paul J.

AU - Sloan, Jeff

AU - Freischlag, Julie A.

PY - 2009/9

Y1 - 2009/9

N2 - OBJECTIVE:: To determine the incidence of burnout among American surgeons and evaluate personal and professional characteristics associated with surgeon burnout. BACKGROUND:: Burnout is a syndrome of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization that leads to decreased effectiveness at work. A limited amount of information exists about the relationship between specific demographic and practice characteristics with burnout among American surgeons. METHODS:: Members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) were sent an anonymous, cross-sectional survey in June 2008. The survey evaluated demographic variables, practice characteristics, career satisfaction, burnout, and quality of life (QOL). Burnout and QOL were measured using validated instruments. RESULTS:: Of the approximately 24,922 surgeons sampled, 7905 (32%) returned surveys. Responders had been in practice 18 years, worked 60 hours per week, and were on call 2 nights/wk (median values). Overall, 40% of responding surgeons were burned out, 30% screened positive for symptoms of depression, and 28% had a mental QOL score >1/2 standard deviation below the population norm. Factors independently associated with burnout included younger age, having children, area of specialization, number of nights on call per week, hours worked per week, and having compensation determined entirely based on billing. Only 36% of surgeons felt their work schedule left enough time for personal/family life and only 51% would recommend their children pursue a career as a physician/surgeon. CONCLUSION:: Burnout is common among American surgeons and is the single greatest predictor of surgeons' satisfaction with career and specialty choice. Additional research is needed to identify individual, organizational, and societal interventions that preserve and promote the mental health of American surgeons.

AB - OBJECTIVE:: To determine the incidence of burnout among American surgeons and evaluate personal and professional characteristics associated with surgeon burnout. BACKGROUND:: Burnout is a syndrome of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization that leads to decreased effectiveness at work. A limited amount of information exists about the relationship between specific demographic and practice characteristics with burnout among American surgeons. METHODS:: Members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) were sent an anonymous, cross-sectional survey in June 2008. The survey evaluated demographic variables, practice characteristics, career satisfaction, burnout, and quality of life (QOL). Burnout and QOL were measured using validated instruments. RESULTS:: Of the approximately 24,922 surgeons sampled, 7905 (32%) returned surveys. Responders had been in practice 18 years, worked 60 hours per week, and were on call 2 nights/wk (median values). Overall, 40% of responding surgeons were burned out, 30% screened positive for symptoms of depression, and 28% had a mental QOL score >1/2 standard deviation below the population norm. Factors independently associated with burnout included younger age, having children, area of specialization, number of nights on call per week, hours worked per week, and having compensation determined entirely based on billing. Only 36% of surgeons felt their work schedule left enough time for personal/family life and only 51% would recommend their children pursue a career as a physician/surgeon. CONCLUSION:: Burnout is common among American surgeons and is the single greatest predictor of surgeons' satisfaction with career and specialty choice. Additional research is needed to identify individual, organizational, and societal interventions that preserve and promote the mental health of American surgeons.

KW - Burnout

KW - Depression

KW - Satisfaction

KW - Surgeon

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=70249094347&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=70249094347&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1097/SLA.0b013e3181ac4dfd

DO - 10.1097/SLA.0b013e3181ac4dfd

M3 - Article

VL - 250

SP - 463

EP - 470

JO - Annals of Surgery

JF - Annals of Surgery

SN - 0003-4932

IS - 3

ER -