“Male surgeons are taller and more handsome than male physicians, according to a study in this week's (traditionally lighthearted) Christmas issue of the British Medical Journal.
Doctors at the University of Barcelona Hospital in Spain noticed that the tallest and most handsome male medical students were more likely to become surgeons, and that the shortest (and perhaps not so good looking) ones were more likely to become physicians.
Observers used the "good looking score" to classify each participant (ranging from 1, ugly to 7, very good looking). The results show that, on average, senior male surgeons are significantly taller and better looking than senior male physicians.”
See BMJ-British Medical Journal, Dec 2006; 333: 1291 – 1293.
I’ve already admitted I’m the researching type, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that when I saw this article, I immediately decided this was an important issue that needed further investigation. Are surgeons more good looking than other doctors?
I have really only known four doctors: my family doctor, my gyno, my former family doctor, and my eye doctor. In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that, despite going to him for years, I’ve never actually seen Dr. Gyno. During my visits with him, 80% of the visit is spent with my eyes tightly squeezed shut, and the other 20% of the visit is spent with me looking awkwardly down at my hands while mumbling unintelligible answers to his questions. But I’m still going to include him in my study.
I definitely needed more data, i.e. I needed to check out more doctors. As much as I would have liked to have done this in person, I just couldn’t see myself hanging around a hospital oogling men. Even for an important research project such as this one. Who am I kidding? Of course I could see myself doing that, and enjoying it immensely. Nevertheless, I just went to the website of a local hospital that provides photos of their doctors. (I only know about this because I was researching BF’s orthopedic surgeon for him.)
I saw the website as a kind of online sales catalogue listing each doctor’s specialty, medical school, and special interests: “Hi, my name is Dr. Jekyll. I am a general surgeon. I attended UTMB-Galveston. I enjoy Hernias, Gallbladders, and long walks along the beach” (ok, I added that last one). I noted that in some of the pictures, the doctors had placed their left hand on their chin, conveniently displaying their ring finger. Nice to know because I immediately deducted points for being married.
I clicked on five specialties, and started picking names at random. Three of the secretaries at work also acted as judges. I swear, I am not making this up, one surgeon’s picture looked like a DWI mugshot. The cutest guy we saw was an ENT doctor. Therefore, I’m not sure I can agree with the BMJ’s findings.
I think that if someone did a study like this in the medblog world, where doctors are read and not seen, you’d find ER doctors, not surgeons, at the top of the survey. They just seem like the bad boys of medicine. And I don’t need a survey to tell me that good girls are drawn to bad boys, or, in this case, their blogs. Happy Holidays.