Subjective Assessment of Stress and its Relationship with Neuroendocrine Mechanisms of its Development in Obstetricians-Gynecologists against the Background of Professional Burnout

Mikhail Yu. Kuzmin, Darya P. Tyumentseva, Maria A. Rashidova, Leonid F. Sholokhov, Anait Yu. Marianian

International Journal of Biomedicine. 2021;11(4):551-557.
DOI: 10.21103/Article11(4)_OA25
Originally published December 10, 2021


The purpose of this сase-control study was to investigate the factors of subjective assessment of stress and their relationship with neuroendocrine mechanisms of its development in obstetricians-gynecologists against the background of professional burnout.
Methods and Results: A total of 96 physicians and nurses from the different clinics specializing in both obstetrics and gynecology were surveyed. The Russian versions of MBI, BDI, SF-12, FFMQ, MAAS, and Coping strategies (the Ways of Coping Checklist) were applied. Blood serum/plasma was tested on the concentration of hormones (DHEA-C and TSH), melatonin, serotonin, and dopamine. Saliva cortisol was also estimated. In the present study, 43.75% of the physicians and nurses showed a high degree of burnout, which was comparable to that among physicians and nurses in other studies. Physicians and nurses with a high degree of burnout had more expressed coping strategies like Confrontive coping, Distancing, Self-controlling, Seeking social support and Escape-avoidance. Also, they have more expressed level of depressive manifestations. We found significant correlations between some factors of subjective assessment of stress (like coping and mindfulness) and neuroendocrine biomarkers.  Adaptive coping like Planful problem-solving correlated negatively with the level of melatonin, and subscales of the mindfulness questionnaire were correlated negatively with levels of some biomarkers. Thus, we concluded that coping strategies and mindfulness could theoretically contribute to a decrease in the secretion of several hormones.
Conclusion: Physicians and nurses with a low degree of burnout have a greater level of mindfulness and a lower level of some maladaptive coping strategies – Confrontive coping, Distancing, Escape-avoidance. Our results focus on the predictive role of these factors of subjective assessment of stress, in particular, Confrontive coping and mindfulness, in burnout syndrome. The present data confirm that there are some psychological and physiological aspects related to stress in the medical profession.

obstetricians-gynecologists • stress • professional burnout • biomarkers
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Received September 28, 2021.
Accepted November 3, 2021.
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