University of Oulu

Xanthoula Lambrianou, Christos Tzerefos, Insa K. Janssen, Stiliana Mihaylova, Aysegul Esen Aydin, Selma Al-Ahmad, Marike LD. Broekman, Nurperi Gazioglu, Silvia Hernandez Duran, Daniela Luminita Ivan, Maria Karampouga, Hulda B. Magnadottir, Ermira Pajaj, Ana Rodríguez-Hernández, Gail Rosseau, Niina Salokorpi, Eleni Tsianaka, Pia Vayssiere, Mary Murphy, Anastasia Tasiou, Gender differences in work-life balance of European neurosurgeons, Brain and Spine, Volume 2, 2022, 101100, ISSN 2772-5294,

Gender differences in work-life balance of European neurosurgeons

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Author: Lambrianou, Xanthoula1; Tzerefos, Christos1; Janssen, Insa K.2;
Organizations: 1Department of Neurosurgery, University Hospital of Larissa, Faculty of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, University of Thessaly, Larissa, Greece
2Department of Neurosurgery, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Genève, Geneva, Switzerland
3Clinic of Neurosurgery, Sv. Ivan Rilski University Hospital, Medical University of Sofia, Sofia, Bulgaria
4Department of Neurosurgery, Arnavutkoy State Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey
5Neurosurgery Department, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, Sheffield, UK
6Department of Neurosurgery, Haaglanden Medical Center and Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, the Netherlands
7Istinye University, Medical Faculty, Department of Neurosurgery, Istanbul, Turkey
8Klinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsmedizin Göttingen, Göttingen, Germany
9Department of Neurosurgery, Bucharest Emergency University Hospital, Carol Davila University of Medicine, Bucharest, Romania
10Neurosurgery Department, Nicosia General Hospital, Nicosia, Cyprus
11Upper Valley Neurology Neurosurgery, Lebanon, NH, USA
12Department of Neurosurgery, Spitali Rajonal Memorial Fier, Fier, Albania
13Department of Neurological Surgery, Germans Trias i Pujol University Hospital, Universidad Autónoma, Barcelona, Spain
14Department of Neurosurgery, George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC, USA
15Department of Neurosurgery, Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland and Research Unit of Clinical Neuroscience, Medical Research Center, Oulu University, Oulu, Finland
16Neurosurgery Department, International Hospital, Salmiya, Kuwait
17Department of Neurosurgery, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, London, UK
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.6 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-06-08


Introduction: Neurosurgery is one of the most demanding medical specialties. For neurosurgeons, balancing professional activity with personal life can be challenging.

Research question: To evaluate gender differences in contribution of neurosurgeons in the household and child-rearing, as well as their impact on personal life and career.

Material and methods: An anonymous, electronic, 59-item web-based survey was administered to National Neurosurgical Societies of Europe, and European Member Societies of the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies (June–October 2021).

Results: A total of 205 European neurosurgeons (87 females and 118 males, mean age 40.7) are included in our survey. In neurosurgery, females are significantly more likely to be alone (37.9%), while males are significantly more likely to have children (66.9%). In terms of household efforts, females spend more time than males on the same tasks. Most participants (71.2%) view gender issues as a disadvantage in career pursuing. Women feel less accepted (54.3%) and having fewer opportunities (58.6%), while men believe that pregnancy/child-rearing (65.8%) and having many roles (51.3%) are the main obstacles. Both genders (77.6%) favor more convenient working conditions for young parents.

Discussion and Conclusion: In our study we found that, women neurosurgeons take more responsibilities at home, especially in the child-rearing years. Female neurosurgeons are more likely to live alone or stay childless more often compared to their male colleagues. Supportive facilities, flexible programs, universal life policies and presumably curbing of the social stereotypes are of importance to overcome gender inequities that women are still facing in neurosurgery.

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Series: Brain and spine
ISSN: 2772-5294
ISSN-E: 2772-5294
ISSN-L: 2772-5294
Volume: 2
Article number: 101100
DOI: 10.1016/j.bas.2022.101100
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 3126 Surgery, anesthesiology, intensive care, radiology
3112 Neurosciences
Copyright information: © 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of EUROSPINE, the Spine Society of Europe, EANS, the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (