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Is it still more or less challenging for a woman to hold a position so high up as a surgeon or chief of surgery within a hospital?

At school, I am most interested in gross anatomy, microbiology, and biology,
while my hobbies include athletics. A topic that I am passionate about is leadership and "organized chaos". #medicine #doctor #biology #surgeon #trauma #icu #chaos #busy #medical #premed #med


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Deema’s Answer

Hi Isabelle! Thank you for your question.

In the past, the field of medicine and of surgery was mostly made up of men, but in recent years, these trends have started to change. In recent years, women have a slight majority in medical school classes over men!

Today, there are countless examples of female surgeons doing incredible things in medicine and being trailblazers in their specialties within surgery. If you want to hear interviews with some wonderful women in surgery, follow the WISER podcast at https://wiserpodcast.com/category/podcasts/.

Deema recommends the following next steps:

Search for "women in surgery" and read stories of the first female surgeons like Dr. Blackwell
Listen to interviews with women in surgery such as the WISER podcast

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Robyn’s Answer

There are more women than men in medical school classes today. Leadership is still skewed toward men and there are a lot of opportunities for women to be surgeons and to be really successful in leadership in medicine. I am an Ob/Gyn and perform gynecologic surgery like hysterectomies and bladder repairs, I am the Department Chair at a large academic hospital. It is rewarding to participate in leadership and it is important for women to have voices in decision making. It is also a challenge to balance education, career, and a family so many women defer leadership positions while they have young children so they can focus on clinical medicine and their families. Good luck!

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Rachel’s Answer

Deema,

I am a colon and rectal surgeon in Texas. My residency class was the first all-female general surgery class that Penn State had ever seen. While there are still few women who serve as chief of surgery at their institutions, the times are changing, and women are stepping into those positions. General surgery now accepts about equal numbers of men and women into their residency classes. If you are motivated to be a physician and a surgeon, go for it. The road will be challenging regardless of your gender, but being a woman should never hold you back.

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Wiley’s Answer

I don't think this is a problem at this time. If you are motivated and have the ambition, there are no limits.

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