I feel like this.
I HAVE FINISHED STEP 1. I. HAVE FINISHED. STEP ONE.
…Said no one, ever.
I know last week I wrote a fairly graphic account of what it’s like to do a pelvic and butthole exam for the first time. Also, there’s no way I can ever top that on this blog, so don’t expect it. We actually finished our reproductive unit before the end of April; the practice exam itself was just rescheduled till recently. Our current unit is called Brain, Behavior and Movement, and covers head and brain anatomy, neurology, psychiatry, and the musculoskeletal system.
When we finish “BB&M,” we’ll be done with first year and start rotations. Woof. Continue reading
This post is not PG. Just… yeah.
Up until this point, most of what we’ve done in medical school could have been taught as part of some unusually advanced undergraduate human biology or physiology major. Yeah, the heart and lung exams were probably out of scope, but learning about how the body works is still in the realm of possibility for someone not in medical school.
Until this week. The Exam That Shall Not Be Named. The genitourinary exam. 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
As mentioned in a previous post, our physical diagnosis class has now moved from seeing simulated patients to performing physicals on real patients. Instead of talking to standardized patients in a videotaped exam room and getting feedback from an experienced medical student, we have graduated: now, we are responsible for seeing hospitalized patients, whom we know nothing about, performing a history and physical, and presenting the findings to a Real, Important Doctor.
That’s scary, by the way. 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 STITCHED UP A GUY’S HEAD.
It was pretty much the coolest thing ever. Last night, I shadowed a doctor who moonlights at the after-hours clinic at the pediatric hospital here. The patients there are the ones who aren’t emergent or “urgent,” but can’t really wait until tomorrow for their regular pediatrician. Most patients were kids with high fevers, babies throwing stuff up, ear infections, etc. I was about to head home a little early (it was a slow night) when a patient popped up on the dashboard with “HEAD LAC” written as the complaint. Continue reading
Somewhat boring/necessary background unless you’re in my class:
At most schools, anatomy is taught in one continuous block, usually at the beginning of the year. By the time September rolls around, most students can identify bizarre-sounding muscles and tell you which stringy pale thing is a vein and which is a nerve. It’s harder than you think.
Our medical school works differently than most. We learn anatomy in segments, according to whatever physiologic systems we’re covering that block. For instance, this 12-week block, called Homeostasis, includes the heart, lung, and kidney. So we’ve dissected most of the thorax, where the heart and lungs are, and examined normal and abnormal kidneys in pathology lab (I’ve written about this previously). Continue reading
You’re ready. As countless people have told you, this entire year has been preparation for this. You are prepared to prepare for the MCAT, the test that will determine your medical school admission chances. Well, that, and whether medical schools are willing to overlook that bio lab grade. Um.
You’re motivated. Your final exams are over, you unwound with dinner and drinks, and your batteries are recharged. Time to tackle this five-hour bastard head-on and show it what you know. Continue reading