I only have one month of research left! Thank god. I can’t wait to get back to clinical medicine.
Medical school is a fascinating place. It’s bound to be; you’re taking 100 or so of the highest-stress, maximum type A personalities that exist and forcing them to attend class, scrap for grades (sometimes), and cohabitate for four years. If we had time for lives and drama, it would make a fantastic reality TV show. Continue reading
Upon returning from winter break, I started up rotations again with psychiatry. Psych is unlike every other block in so many ways: there’s no physical exam, you spend tons of time with patients, and we have basically no idea why any major treatment works. Really.
I need to qualify the rest of this post, as usual when I say untoward things about people or fields where I’m working: patients here are clearly sick and need intense treatment, and there is nothing funny about people who are seriously mentally ill. Continue reading
A week after our final physical diagnosis exam was our last “end of block assessment” of first year, which is fancy med school terminology for “final exam.” Like our other tests in first year, it was remarkable only for how long it was (fourteen-ish hours over three days) and for how absurd some of the questions were. Continue reading
I haven’t written in quite awhile because I was busy. Busy training for PROBABLY THE TOUGHEST EVENT ON THE PLANET, otherwise known as the Tough Mudder.
(Okay, maybe I wasn’t grinding out ten-mile runs or doing burpees at five in the morning. More realistically I was eating Doritos and watching Game of Thrones). It’s also probably not the toughest event on the planet; that distinction likely belongs to the Death Race, a 48-hour monstrosity that includes chopping up an oak tree stump with a hacksaw to reach the starting line and psychological torture like eating a bag of onions and counting out $500 in pennies while squatting in an icy pond. Continue reading
Two weeks ago, our medical school had its “Cadaver Ball” – a med school prom of sorts, traditionally held to commemorate the end of first-year anatomy. Although we now carry anatomy through the summer (ugh), the tradition of Cadaver Ball remains a spring event. Continue reading
One of the coolest things about going to school here is that we are constantly supported, advised, and mentored by faculty interested in our medical education. The experience is so extensive here that it sometimes verges on too much. For instance, here are the titles of the people involved under the general category of “advisors” to first-year students: Continue reading
Last week contained fourteen hours’ worth of exams – our comprehensive “end of block assessment” for the systems of the heart, lung, kidney, and blood. Plus anatomy and many other things I didn’t know. The Friday portion of the exam was a three-hour multiple choice exam of boards-style questions. For those of you that aren’t medical people, boards questions are notoriously difficult and are representative of the test all graduating medical students must pass to match into a residency program. An example: Continue reading
I’ve written quite a bit this academic year about our Physical Diagnosis class, including encounters with standardized patients. But starting in a couple of weeks, things change dramatically. Instead of practicing skills on standardized patients, we enter the hospital under the guidance of an assigned “tutor” to apply our lecture knowledge of the physical exam. Continue reading
(I guarantee you this is not what it sounds like.)
Last week, we began a new unit, called “Homeostasis.” I am wholly unclear what “homeostasis” means, but it sounds important. The previous unit was all about the various infections you could catch and how your body tried and/or failed to fight them off; this unit is about the heart, lungs, and kidneys.
Everything about the heart, lungs, and kidneys. Continue reading
[Note to my classmates reading this: I know this isn’t exactly what’s in your lecture notes. Shut up and smile. Then go back to studying Th2 cells, because we both know you don’t know them.]
[Note to my mom: don’t read this, you won’t sleep until Thanksgiving.]
Hi. My name is Nate, and I’m a medical student.
This week, my ninety-nine classmates and I are about to take the final exam for our second block. It’s called Microbes and Immunity, and can be briefly described as “how your body fights off infection, and by the way here are some examples of the thousands and thousands of different ways you can get sick and/or die.” Continue reading