Year : 2020  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 141-146

Perception and career choice of otorhinolaryngology among final year medical students: a two centre survey in a developing country

1 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Benue State University, Makurdi, Benue State
2 Department of Ear, Nose and Throat Surgery, Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital, Abakiliki, Ebonyi State
3 Department of Ear, Nose and Throat Surgery, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, Anambra State
4 Department of Ear, Nose and Throat Surgery, Irrua Specialist Hospital, Irrua, Edo State
5 Department of Ear, Nose and Throat Surgery, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos, Plateau State
6 Department of Ear, Nose, and Throat Surgery, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku-Ozalla Enugu, Enugu State

Correspondence Address:
A Adekwu
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Benue State University, Makurdi, Benue State
Benue State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jomt.jomt_17_20

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Background: Otorhinolaryngology (ORL) cares for pathologies involving the ear, nose, throat, however in the developing countries, it does not attract much patronage from young doctors thereby resulting in shortage of manpower in the subspecialty. This study was to assess the perception of otorhinolaryngology as a career and establish the factors involved in career choice among final year medical students in two universities in a developing country. Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive study undertaken using a self-administered questionnaire designed to assess the perception and determinants of career choice in ORL which was distributed to consenting final year medical students of the Benue State University (BSU), Makurdi and University of Nigeria (UNN), Enugu Campus. Results: A total of 122 questionnaires with complete data were analysed. Males constituted 65.6% while ages of participants were 21 to 37 years. BSU and UNN had 40 and 82 respondents respectively. Surgical specialties were the most preferred choice in 76 (62.3%) then Internal Medicine in 15 (12.3%). Otorhinolaryngology at 11 (14.5%) was the third preferred surgical specialty. Personal interest (78.4%), mentor influence (7.4%) and financial gain (7.4%) were the main determinants of specialty choice. Majority of the respondents 78 (63.9%) viewed Otorhinolaryngology as important and interesting. Modern teaching aids 24 (19.7%), increase in duration of posting 19 (15.6%), mentorship 15 (12.3%) were top suggestions that may attract interest in ORL. Conclusion: This study found that otorhinolaryngology was the third most preferred surgical subspecialty. Personal interest was the overriding reason for career choice among these medical students.

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