Are Army-trained surgeons satisfied with their residencies?

Daniel R. Cronk, Stephen P. Hetz, Kenneth S. Azarow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the perceptions of training adequacy among surgeons educated in Army general surgical residencies as a tool for surgical program directors and students considering a military surgical career. Design: A questionnaire was sent to all general surgeons practicing in the Army during years 1999-2003 (n = 182). In addition to providing basic demographic information, subjects rated their perceptions of training experience in 13 areas on a 5-point Likert scale (1 = very dissatisfied, 2 = somewhat dissatisfied, 3 = neither satisfied nor dissatisfied, 4 = somewhat satisfied, 5 = very satisfied). Respondents were split into 3 groups based on graduation year (1968-1992, 1993-1998, 1999-2003) and thereby roughly on status of military obligation at the time of survey. Scores were compared with analysis of variance. Results: A total of 96 (52.7%) questionnaires were returned, 84 of which were included in this study. The average score for all graduation groups and satisfaction areas was 4.37 ± 0.91. No differences occurred among the 3 graduation groups in any of the 13 satisfaction areas evaluated, except for pediatric surgery experience, where the most recent graduates rated their satisfaction lower than the other 2 groups (1968-1992, 4.00 ± 0.61; 1993-1998, 3.96 ± 1.14; 1999-2003, 3.21 ± 1.27, p < 0.05). With respect to comparison among the 13 satisfaction areas, several areas of note are present. Satisfaction with training in care for basic surgical problems and the ability to make correct decisions are both higher than 5 other areas (p < 0.01). By contrast, satisfaction with number of cases performed, research training, and pediatric surgery training are lower than at least 3 of the other 12 areas (p < 0.01). Conclusion: Army trained general surgeons, from the most distant to recent graduates, are satisfied with their residencies. Lower satisfaction scores in the areas of number of cases performed, research experience, and pediatric surgery training do, however, highlight aspects for continued research and improvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-203
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • General surgery
  • Graduate medical education
  • Military
  • Residency
  • Satisfaction
  • Survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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