When docs love docs

Modern Healthcare - - Outliers -

New data in­di­cates that sur­geons, never known for their warm per­son­al­i­ties, in many ways would be bet­ter off avoid­ing other doc­tors when choos­ing a do­mes­tic or mar­riage part­ner. “Dual-physi­cian re­la­tion­ships are fraught with chal­lenges re­sult­ing from com­bin­ing the ca­reer as­pi­ra­tions and work lives of two highly trained pro­fes­sion­als work­ing in a de­mand­ing and un­pre­dictable job,” say the au­thors of a study pub­lished in the Novem­ber is­sue of the Jour­nal of the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Sur­geons.

Sur­geons who marry or part­ner with physi­cians ex­pe­ri­ence sig­nif­i­cantly greater ca­reer con­flict and are less likely to achieve a good work-home life bal­ance than do sur­geons who marry or part­ner with non­physi­cians, ac­cord­ing to the study. That re­ally should come as no sur­prise to any­one who’s watched “Grey’s Anatomy” or “ER.”

The study also found, though, that sur­geons mar­ried to doc­tors ap­pear to be bet­ter off when it comes to ex­pe­ri­enc­ing emo­tional ex­haus­tion or burnout.

The study didn’t at­tempt to sum­ma­rize all of the re­sults to say whether sur­geons are bet­ter or worse off mar­ry­ing or part­ner­ing with a physi­cian, leav­ing that open to in­ter­pre­ta­tion. It did say more of such sur­geon-doc­tor part­ner­ships are likely to oc­cur be­cause more women are be­com­ing sur­geons.

Doc­tors mar­ried to sur­geons may find the ex­pe­ri­ence es­pe­cially stress­ful.

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