Stress among Residents in a Tertiary Care Center, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Prevalence and Associated Risk Factors
Objectives: To examine perceived stress among medical and surgical residents in King Fahad Medical City, Saudi Arabia and its associated risk factors.
Methods: A cross-sectional study of all King Fahad Medical City residents in medical and surgical departments registered at the Saudi Commission for Health Specialties, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, was conducted between Augusts-October 2016. We assessed the likelihood of stress using the Kessler (K6) tool.
Results: All residents (104) from departments of medicine and surgery were included in the study but only 87 (83.7%) responded. Mean age for the residents was 27.83 ± 2.9 years with mean experience in this tertiary care center 2.39 ± 1.8 years. The mean (± standard deviation) stress score was 20.1 ± 5.6 out of 30 (67%). Mean stress score was significantly associated with female gender, non-Saudis, surgery and R5 residents. No significant mean difference was noted according to marital status or age. According to stress level the results showed that 7 (8.6%) are well with no stress, 27 (33.4%) have mild or moderate stress levels, while 47 (58%) of the residents have severe stress level. There is a significant association between severe stress level and advancing age, surgery and non-Saudi residents. The significant predictors of stress were the department and gender only. Total stress level was significantly correlated with feeling of being unable to work during the last 30 days,
Conclusion: Residents in Saudi Arabia are at comparable or slightly higher risk of perceived stress than that reported among residents worldwide. Stress level was significantly associated with gender, nationality and department. There is an urgent need for stress management programs during residency training.