Crying: experiences and attitudes of third-year medical students and interns.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: The medical socialization process is emotionally stressful for trainees; anecdotally, crying is a frequent response. PURPOSES: To understand the experiences and attitudes related to crying among 3rd-year medical students and interns. METHODS: Web-based survey distributed to all 3rd-year medical students and interns at two medical schools and affiliated internal medicine residency programs. RESULTS: Participation rates were 208/307 (68%) students and 93/126 (74%) interns. Sixty-nine percent of students and 74% of interns self-reported crying for reasons related to medicine. For both, the most common cause was "burnout." Although there were no significant differences in crying between students and interns (p =.38), twice as many women cried as men (93% vs. 44%, p <.001). Seventy-three percent of students and 68% of interns thought discussion of physicians' crying was inadequate. CONCLUSIONS: Crying is common among medical students and interns, especially women. Many consider it unprofessional to cry in front of patients and colleagues. Trainees want more discussions of crying.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Sung, AD; Collins, ME; Smith, AK; Sanders, AM; Quinn, MA; Block, SD; Arnold, RM

Published Date

  • July 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 21 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 180 - 187

PubMed ID

  • 20183336

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1532-8015

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/10401330903014111


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States