Three Reasons Why There Are More Male Plastic Surgeons Than Female


Plastic Surgery is a specialty that is aimed at wellness and wholeness.  Feeling comfortable in one’s own body is a critical part of holistic health. Women (and men) seek plastic surgery because they are unhappy with some aspect of their physical self. For many women, a female insight into how one relates to one’s own physical presence can improve the chances of achieving confidence with her body.  It is possible that women (not all women) may have an edge on men (not all men) on how this psychology operates, and hence might be better equipped to address the wanted change.  It is surprising how the numbers of female plastic surgeons lag behind, when the great majority of people seeking plastic surgery are female. Here are some stats:

  • 90% of plastic surgery patients are women, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
  • 50% of medical school graduates are female.
  • The American Society of Plastic Surgery has 758 female members and 4742 male members.  That is a shocking 14%.

So why are there so few women among the graduating medical classes that choose plastic surgery for their career?

  1. First, it’s only been in the last 10-15 years that women have consistently represented half of medical students. Training to become a plastic surgeon is a minimum of six years after four years of medical school so even if half the class is female it is ten years before those women are even able to enter the field of plastic surgery, and another two years to become board certified.
  2. Work-life balance issues are prominent. The hours per week and years of training cut pretty heavily into time for family, friends, and outside interests. If having children is a high priority a choice must be made for women in surgical specialties between hours spent become a skilled specialist or hours spent on maternity leave.
  3. Plastic Surgery is also such a male dominated specialty that many women simply do not want to put up with the sexist subtleties of training. The battle of the sexes is old news, and though there is change that occurs very slowly in women’s position in the workplace, many will pick a different front to address the issues and show their full strength. In other words, they choose a career where the leadership makes them feel entirely welcome, rather than having to struggle with cultural sexism to establishing their worth

The good news is that the women who have chosen the career path to becoming highly trained, skilled, and  certified  by the American Board of Plastic Surgery  are a dedicated and talented bunch!

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