A new study in the January issue of Archives of Surgery shows that there is a high rate of suicide in surgeons. Of those queried, about 6 percent reported recent suicidal thoughts. If they made a recent major medical error then the rate was 16 percent. Only about one-fourth of those with suicidal thoughts said they'd sought professional mental health. Comparing to the the general public, about 3 percent have suicidal thoughts and 44 percent seek mental health treatment. Causes are unknown but long hours, the medical errors as mentioned above, job burnout and depression all are possibilities. I have blogged multiple times about physician suicide. It is not an anomaly. It happens. I know of three docs in the past few years who have taken their own lives. Unless there is anonymous support then this issue will continue. Even with the anonymous support, the job can take its toll on caregivers. I am glad that these studies continue to get some play time in the media but it will surely get buried once again (just like the docs who kill themselves).