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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 209-212

Comparison of quality of life between medical students and young general populations

Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, Fluminense Federal University, Niterói, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Correspondence Address:
Daniel Pagnin
Marques do Paraná, 303 Prédio Anexo, Niterói - RJ, CEP 24.030-215
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1357-6283.178599

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Background: During the course of their education, medical students learn to attend to the quality of life of their patients. However, their own quality of life can begin to decrease early in medical school. The purpose of this study was to compare the quality of life of medical students to that of others their age, taking into account the medical school phase and gender. Methods: We used the short version of the World Health Organization Quality of Life Instrument to assess psychological well-being, physical health, social relationships and environmental conditions. The quality of life among 206 medical students was compared to that of 199 young people from a normative population using independent sample t- tests. In addition, the effects of medical school phase and gender on quality of life domains were also assessed by two-way between-groups analysis of variance. Results: Medical students showed worse psychological well-being and social relationships than young people in the normative sample. About one-half of the students revealed a low quality of life in the psychological and social domains and one-quarter showed a low quality of life in the physical health and environment domains. Medical school phase did not influence quality of life, however, gender had a large effect, where female students showed worse physical and psychological well-being than male students. Discussion: Poor psychological well-being and social relationships can have implications that exceed the doctor's personal well-being. Future doctors with a low quality of life may translate into their poorer performance, impairing patient care.

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