Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, USA
Title: Stress and Burnout among Medical Students: Exploring the Differences between Female and Male Millennials
Biography: Stefan Bughi
Objective: Stress and burnout are commonly reported among millennial medical students. A medical student’s perception and response to stress can affect their health, delivery of quality care and practice of patient safety. The purpose of this study is to explore the prevalence and gender differences in burnout and coping mechanisms used in a sample of third-year, millennial medical students rotating at a Southern California hospital. Method: A cross-sectional study was conducted with 139 third-year, medical students. Questions regarding perception and management of stress were administered. Burnout and associated characteristics of emotional exhaustion, cynicism, and decreased professional efficacy were assessed. The validated instrument used for this was the Maslach Burnout Inventory-Student Survey (MBI-SS). Descriptive and chi-square analyses were performed. Results: In this sample, 114/139 (82.0%) students reported their gender: 55/114 (48.2%) females and 59/114 (51.8%) males. The mean age was 26.4 +/- 3.72 years old. Emotional exhaustion, cynicism, and decreased professional efficacy were prevalent among the students, with 19/139 (13.8%) reporting high-level scores on all three burnout characteristics. Statistical significant gender differences (p < 0.05) were found regarding perception and management of stress. Compared to females, more males noted that stress did not bother them (χ² = 4.509, p < 0.05) or they did not pay attention to stress (χ² = 4.961, p < 0.05). However, with respect to stress management, female students were more likely than their male counterparts to eat sweets (χ² = 4.431, p < 0.05), practice yoga (χ² = 5.719, p < 0.05), or seek professional help (χ² = 4.373, p < 0.05). Conclusion: Burnout is frequently experienced among third-year medical students suggesting a need for early effective wellness interventions in medical training. Further assessments regarding how medical students perceive and respond to stress, including potential gender differences is recommended.