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Identification of factors associated with resilience in medical students through a cross-sectional census

13 Nov 2017

Objectives

Research on resilience has been gaining momentum, and it has already been shown that increased resilience creates positive changes at the individual and collective levels. Understanding of the factors associated with resilience may guide specific actions directed towards different populations. The objective of this study was to investigate these associated factors within a population of medical students.

Design

Cross-sectional census.

Setting

A public medical school in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Participants

Out of a total of 551 medical students, five students were excluded due to inactive registrations, and four transferred students were also excluded, resulting in a total of 542 remaining participants.

Measures

Adopting an anonymous questionnaire that included the Resilience Scale, in addition to questions related to sociodemographic, behavioural health-related and academic variables, the association between these variables and resilience was investigated.

Results

The high rate of answers to each item constitutes a indication of students’ interest in participating, whereas the lowest percentile was 97.1%. The mean resilience score obtained was considered moderate. Factors such as gender, race, previous schools attended, financial independence, living situation, parents’ education level, religion, quota-based admission, smoking, alcohol abuse and use of illegal drugs were not associated with resilience. In a multivariate analysis using ordinal logistic regression, associations were maintained only between the highest resilience score and the non-use of habit-forming prescription drugs (OR: 0.58; 95% CI 0.41 to 0.80), having a better perception of one’s own health (OR: 0.57; 95% CI 0.41 to 0.81) and being older (OR: 1.37; 95% CI 1.12 to 1.67).

Conclusion

The census performed with the medical students showed, with the multivariate analysis, that besides age, the variables most closely tied with resilience were health and medicalisation, and the variables connected with income and religion showed no association.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in BMJ Open