Jefferson Journal of Psychiatry



The issue of physician impairment, that is , decreased ability or quality of functioning due to intemperate use of drugs or alcohol, emotional or psychiatric dysfunction, has recently received attention (1,5) . Studies have indicated the risks physicians face of substance abuse problems(6,7), marital discord(8,9), suicide (lO,ll), and psychiatric problems (l2-14). studies have also addressed the difficulties faced by medical students (15-20).

A group of medical students at the University of North Carolina came together to investigate the subject of medical student impairment . A survey was constructed in order to ascertain the sources of stress in medical school. The results were used to develop a second survey instrument that was distributed to all students in the medical school and is presently being analyzed. A portion of the results are presented in this paper because of their unique focus on interpersonal relationships as sources of stress.

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