Determinants of Stress, Fatigue, Somatic Complaints and Sleep Problems in Emergency Physicians
S. Maes1, F. Somville2, V. De Gucht1
1Leiden university, The Netherlands
2Erica Hospital Group
Background: This study investigated to what extent demographics, traumatic occupational events, occurrence of physical occupational hazards, violence and situations that can cause burnout as well as social support of by colleagues and supervisor contributed to post traumatic stress, psychological distress, subjective fatigue, somatic complaints and sleep problems in emergency physicians (EP). Methods: 346 questionnaires, measuring the above concepts by means of mainly validated instruments, were distributed to EP at two emergency medicine conferences. This resulted in 150 usable questionnaires. Hierarchical regression analyses were conducted to explore the contribution of the independent variables on the dependent variables. Findings: High clinical levels were found for all outcome variables. For post-traumatic stress and psychological distress occurrence of burnout situations was the most important predictor. For subjective fatigue occurrence of violence, burnout situations and lack of social support by colleagues were significant predictors. For somatic complaints gender, occurrence of burnout situations, lack of social support by the supervisor and lack of social support by colleagues explained most variance. Sleep problems were mainly predicted by traumatic events. Discussion: There is a lack of research on occupational stress in physicians. These data suggest that EP do not only experience a lot of occupational stress, but that some determinants are more important than others and can be important intervention targets.