Behavior and attitudes among European neurosurgeons – An international survey

Ivo S. Muskens, Stéphanie M.E. van der Burgt, Joeky T. Senders, Nayan Lamba, Saskia M. Peerdeman, Marike L. Broekman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review


Background: A recent survey showed that potentially hazardous levels of certain attitudes have been associated with worse patient outcomes in orthopedic surgery, based on a questionnaire that was adopted from aviation. This questionnaire aims to evaluate the prevalence of potentially hazardous levels of machismo, impulsiveness, anxiety, antiauthority, resignation, and invulnerability in attitudes and was adopted for use among neurosurgeons. Methods: All individual members of the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies (EANS) were invited to fill-out an online questionnaire. Questions were on a five-point Likert-scale ranging from strongly disagree to strongly agree with five questions per attitude and answers were collected together with neurosurgeon and practice characteristics. Participants could score five points for each question after which an overall score was calculated for each attitude. Like the orthopedic survey, a potentially hazardous level of any behavior was defined as a score >20. Results: Resignation (n = 21; 7.7%) and anxiety (n = 10; 3.7%) had the highest prevalence of potentially hazardous levels among neurosurgeons. Few neurosurgeons showed potentially hazardous levels of antiauthority (n = 4; 1.5%), self-confidence (n = 2; 0.7%), or impulsive attitudes (n = 1; 0.4%). None of the participants showed potentially hazardous levels of machismo. Overall, 12.2% of neurosurgeons had a potentially hazardous score for at least one of the evaluated attitudes. Conclusion: Findings of this study indicate a low prevalence of potentially hazardous levels of certain attitudes among neurosurgeons based on a questionnaire tailored to neurosurgery. However, the implications of this study are limited by various factors and warrant further evaluation and warrant further evaluation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-9
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Neuroscience
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018

Cite this