Background: Many surgical departments in the United States lack endocrine surgery faculty. Although endocrine surgeons can provide worthwhile clinical services, it is unclear how they contribute to the overall academic mission of the department. The present study aims to evaluate the academic productivity of endocrine surgeons, as defined by the American Association of Endocrine Surgeons (AAES) membership, when compared with other academic surgical faculty.
Materials and methods: An established database of 4081 surgical department faculty was used for this study. This database includes surgical faculty of the top 50 National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded universities and faculty from five outstanding hospital-based surgical departments. Academic metrics including publication, citations, H-index, and NIH funding were obtained using publically available data from websites. The AAES membership status was gathered from the online membership registry.
Results: A total of 110 AAES members were identified in this database, accounting for 2.7% of this population. Overall, the AAES members outperformed other academic surgical faculty with respect to publications (66 ± 94 versus 28 ± 91, P < 0.001), publication citations (1430 ± 3432 versus 495 ± 2955, P < 0.001), and H-index (19 ± 18 versus 10 ± 13, P < 0.001). In addition, the AAES members were more likely to have former/current NIH funding and hold divisional or departmental leadership positions than their non-AAES member colleagues.
Conclusions: Based on these data, the AAES members excelled with respect to publications, citations, and research funding compared with nonendocrine surgical faculty. These results demonstrate that endocrine surgeons can contribute enormously to the overall academic mission. Therefore, more surgical departments in the United States should consider establishing an endocrine surgery program.
Keywords: AAES; Academic productivity; Bibliometrics; Endocrine surgery; H-index.
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