Tokyo — A survey of Japanese surgeons reveals that long operations and those during which patients suffer significant blood loss are the two most stressful scenarios for surgeons, the online Los Angeles Times reports.
The findings are based on survey responses and urine tests from 66 Japanese surgeons practicing in Kitakyushu, a city in the southwestern part of the country. The surgeons were asked to complete one questionnaire to measure their mental state and another to more directly measure stress. Urine tests were administered to detect biopyrin, a biomarker of oxidative stress.
Scores on both surveys were linked to the duration of surgeries and the amount of blood loss during procedures. Researchers found that levels of biopyrin in the blood were significantly higher when surgeries lasted more than three hours and when patients lost at least 200 grams of blood.
The study also found that there were no increases in stress markers in scenarios one might assume to be overly stressful: performing many surgeries in a day, being the primary surgeon or performing conventional (as opposed to minimally invasive) surgeries.