Psychosomatic symptoms among hospital physicians during the Gaza War: A repeated cross-sectional study

Menachem Ben-Ezra, Yuval Palgi, Jonathan Jacob Wolf, Amit Shrira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Research regarding psychosomatic symptoms among hospital physicians during armed conflict is scarce. The current study compared psychosomatic symptoms of exposed and unexposed hospital physicians in two studies. The studies were conducted during 2009 and included a survey of two random samples of hospital physicians, one conducted during the Gaza War and the other conducted six months later. Each sample included hospital physicians who were directly exposed to war-related stress and others who were not (Study 1: N = 54; Study 2: N = 31). In Study 1, exposed hospital physicians did not differ from unexposed physicians in the level of psychosomatic symptoms during the war (Psychosomatic Problems Scale 6.48 vs 4.09). However, in Study 2, exposed physicians reported a higher level of psychosomatic symptoms (10.33 vs 3.21). Moreover, analysis of covariance revealed a significant interaction effect of Exposure X Study (F = 7.976; p =.006; ηp2 =.100). Exposure to war-related stress takes a toll on psychosomatic symptoms among hospital physicians. This late onset of psychosomatic symptoms is discussed in light of the cognitive-energetical model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-174
Number of pages5
JournalIsrael Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2011


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