A cross-sectional analysis of compassion fatigue, burnout, and compassion satisfaction in pediatric surgeons in the U.S.

Alex Sarosi, Brian A. Coakley, Loren Berman, Claudia M. Mueller, Kristy L. Rialon, Mary L. Brandt, Kurt Heiss, Andrea S. Weintraub

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background/Purpose: To determine the prevalence of compassion fatigue (CF), burnout (BO), and compassion satisfaction (CS) and identify potential predictors of these phenomena in pediatric surgeons. Methods: The Compassion Fatigue and Satisfaction Self-Test and a survey of personal/professional characteristics were distributed electronically to American Pediatric Surgical Association members. Linear regression models for CF, BO, and CS as a function of potential risk factors were constructed. Results: The analyzeable study response rate was 25.7%. The prevalence of CF, BO, and CS was 22%, 24% and 22, respectively, which were similar to prevalences previously identified in pediatric subspecialists. Higher CF scores were significantly associated with: higher BO scores; solo practice; compensation; ≥5 operating days/week; current distress about a ‘clinical situation’; mental health-care for work-related distress; and history of childhood surgery. Lower CF scores were significantly associated with ‘talking with a life partner’ about work-related distress. Higher BO scores were significantly associated with: higher CF scores; current distress about ‘coworkers’; and ‘keeping lawsuits confidential’. Lower BO scores were significantly associated with higher CS scores. Conclusions: CF, BO, and CS are distinct but highly related entities. Pediatric surgeons experience these phenomena at similar rates to other pediatric subspecialists. Establishing local channels for physician peer support may be particularly impactful.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1276-1284
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pediatric Surgery
Volume56
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2021

Keywords

  • Burnout
  • Compassion fatigue
  • Compassion satisfaction

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