Societal preferences for gender of surgeons: A cross-sectional study in the general population of Pakistan

Document Type



Medical College Pakistan; Cardiothoracic Surgery


Background: Sociocultural norms and gender biases may result in surgeon gender preferences among the general public. This study aimed to understand preferences and perceptions related to surgeon gender among the general population in Pakistan, a lower-middle-income country.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted by the Aga Khan University, Karachi, among the adult general population in Pakistan. Sequential mixed-mode data collection was performed via online dissemination on social media platforms and in-person surveying at different geographic locations in Karachi.
Results: Among 1604 respondents, 50% did not report having surgeon gender preferences in general. Among respondents with gender preferences, there was a highly significant preference for gender concordance across all surgical subspecialties (p Conclusion: While around half of respondents do not have gender preferences, a significant proportion prefers a gender concordant surgeon across subspecialties. In a society where conservative sociocultural norms play a significant role when seeking health care, this makes yet another compelling argument for gender parity in surgery.


Volume, issue, and pagination are not provided by the author/publisher

Publication (Name of Journal)

World journal of surgery