You might think that highly successful and professional doctors do not face sexual harassment, but it occurs far more than most people realize. An orthopedic surgeon is a highly trained medical care provider, yet a recent study published in the journal Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research says that sexual harassment is rampant among women undergoing training to become orthopedic surgeons.

High rates of sexual harassment among trainees

The past few decades have seen high rates of sexual harassment targeting women enrolled in orthopedic training programs. When surveyed, about two-thirds of 250 female orthopedic surgeons said they experienced sexual harassment during their professional training. Just to gain access to a training program is an accomplishment, and many women undergoing training clearly feel extreme pressure to successfully complete their training, which opens the door for sexual harassment.

Responses highlight ongoing problem

The percentage of sexual harassment is exceptionally high among survey respondents partly due to non-response bias, and there is no random sampling or variation among respondents to make the study more scientifically valid, but it does illustrate the widespread problem of sexual harassment among professional women from virtually all walks of life. It also shows that the problem exists everywhere and is not limited to any particular region or type of locale.

No matter what your current job might be, sexual harassment is illegal. When it occurs, the victims often feel powerless to do anything about it. An orthopedic trainee is a perfect example of a woman in a situation where sexual harassment could become a powerful tool to manipulate her into doing something she does not want to gain entry into a professional field. If you have been in a similar situation, an employment law attorney may be able to help you hold the perpetrator and your employer accountable.