ISSN : 1301-5680
e-ISSN : 2149-8156
Turkish Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery     
A nationwide survey of Turkish medical students" upon interest and decision for cardiovascular surgery as a future career: A cross-sectional survey
Serkan Burc Deser1, Dilara Durak2, Metin Altin2, Ahmet Yuksel3
1Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Istanbul University-Cerrahpaşa, Istanbul, Türkiye
2Student, Medicine Faculty of Ondokuz Mayıs University, Samsun, Türkiye
3Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Bursa City Hospital, Bursa, Türkiye
DOI : 10.5606/tgkdc.dergisi.2023.24710
Background: In this study, we aimed to investigate the current interest of Turkish medical students to pursue a career in cardiovascular surgery and to identify possible factors which positively or negatively affected their decisions.

Methods: Between January 2022 and August 2022, a cross-sectional survey of 34 questions was created using the Google Forms online survey platform. Questions were directed to participants to evaluate demographic features, interest level in cardiovascular surgery, interest in other specialty programs, and interest in residency abroad using fivepoint Likert scales.

Results: A total of 5338 Medical Students were reached who were balanced to 7 geographical regions across Türkiye and 1233 (23%) medical students participated in the questionnaire. Of the respondents, 544 were males and 689 were females with a mean age of 21.2±0.5 (range, 17 to 28) years. More than half of the students (56.2%) considered residency training programs in Türkiye. Cardiology had the highest preference rate for residency training (8.3%), followed by cardiovascular surgery (7.5%). More than one-third of students (36.5%) who were interested in pursuing a career in cardiovascular surgery decided to be trained abroad. Achieving a prestigious job, motivation for life saving, prioritizing innovations, and high academic studies were the main factors that positively affected the perspective of students on cardiovascular surgery, while stressful surgeries, intense and tiring night shifts, and a relatively poor social life/work balance were the main deterrent factors. Attendance to cardiovascular surgeries positively affected the decisions of students (p=0.008).

Conclusion: Although it is thought that the interest in pursuing a career in cardiovascular surgery has reduced in recent years all over the world, our study shows that cardiovascular surgery still continues to be a popular specialty among Turkish medical students. Therefore, we believe that guiding medical students by using their current potential and encouraging the students to attend cardiovascular surgeries more frequently throughout their education life are essential in choosing cardiovascular surgery as a future career option.

Keywords : Career choice, cardiac surgery, cardiovascular surgery, medical students, residency
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