Messy Business

Surgeons may not be Machiavellian but there’s proof they’re a little vain

Are you narcissistic, or psychopathic? Neither, are you sure? Would your colleagues back you up on that one…

Well, some clever bods decided to research the stereotypes in medicine. They assessed the levels of ‘dark triad’ personality traits expressed by health professionals in comparison with the general population.

They measured narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy through self-reported personality questionnaires.

Healthcare professionals scored significantly lower on narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy than the general population.

Nurses exhibited a significantly higher level of secondary psychopathy than doctors.

And surgeons expressed significantly higher levels of narcissism.

(Tell us something we don’t already know).

So, any suggestion that healthcare professionals are avaricious and untrustworthy can now be refuted, even for surgeons.

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