Posts tagged student life

The best doctors…
Never underestimate how lifestyle impacts your health. A bit of healthy living can go a long way.

The best doctors…

Never underestimate how lifestyle impacts your health. A bit of healthy living can go a long way.

Every Morning.

Every Morning.

Jeopardy / Millionaire

If you find yourself wanting to do a group study session but want to bring some excitement and competition to the table, why not set up a game night for your friends?

For academic medical students, try a hand at adapting Jeopardy. It takes some time to build up enough cards and factoids to make a late night session worthwhile. Do it in teams or fly solo. Can you answer fast enough?

For clinical medical students, adapt a game of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? Put yourself in the hot seat in the audience of your friends and try to rank up in a certain topic. Find help with the 50/50 option, poll your audience, or call a friend (e.g. a dermatology resident for a skin lesion question). Rewards can range from free meals to switching prized call shifts to just good old fashion prestige. 

Have you ever played a study game? Share your ideas below.

The Debt of Graduating Medical Students.
Education is never a cheap proposition but studying medicine has a huge financial impact on prospective doctors. This is always the key challenge regardless of who you are or what background you come from.
Therefore, always have a plan going into medical school. Speak with a financial advisor, either at your bank or with your medical college. They can help build a portfolio and projection of what your savings and expenditures looks like. Maybe you are richer than you think and can afford a short vacation to somewhere exotic. Maybe you need to reduce the amount you spend going out for dinner. It is an opportunity to build perspective and understanding of your own finances. 

The Debt of Graduating Medical Students.

Education is never a cheap proposition but studying medicine has a huge financial impact on prospective doctors. This is always the key challenge regardless of who you are or what background you come from.

Therefore, always have a plan going into medical school. Speak with a financial advisor, either at your bank or with your medical college. They can help build a portfolio and projection of what your savings and expenditures looks like. Maybe you are richer than you think and can afford a short vacation to somewhere exotic. Maybe you need to reduce the amount you spend going out for dinner. It is an opportunity to build perspective and understanding of your own finances. 

The Satchel.
Through thick and thin, my satchel has accompanied me through medical school. Initially, it strictly carried books and papers; now it is a repurposed bag for a clinical life.
I talked briefly about what I usually carry with me in my first clinical pearl post. In response to Wayfaring MD’s post, I thought I would share what I actually bring with me. These are my standard issue items, with room for switching or adding more items as needed:
Satchel
Pocket evaluation forms: For clinical skills and procedures.
Pocket Medicine: A compact book for diagnostics, investigations and laboratory values.
Two clipboards: The first contains regular paper for note taking including pre-printed progress notes and other chart-related forms; the second contains preceptor documentations including more formal evaluation sheets, outcomes checklists as well as my weekly schedule.
The notepad: Where I write and gather my patient information and keep the to-do list for the patients I am responsible for.
Moleskin notebook: Where I keep rotation specific clinical pearls and other tips and tricks.
Two pens: Always keep a back up pen. Always.
Pen light: For the quick neurological screen.
ID cards
Three packs of lubricating jelly: Need to do a digital rectal exam or a bimanual exam? Gloves are everywhere but these are not.
Access codes and contact list
Juice box
Two granola bars
Pager: How I wish this could not be standard issue.
Stethoscope: If I am not walking around with it around my neck, it goes back into the bag until its next calling.
Other items that I will sometimes include are rotation specific pocketbooks, headphones, and my phone charger to name a few.
To the medical readers, what do you carry with you? Tag your response with #what’s in your pocket.

The Satchel.

Through thick and thin, my satchel has accompanied me through medical school. Initially, it strictly carried books and papers; now it is a repurposed bag for a clinical life.

I talked briefly about what I usually carry with me in my first clinical pearl post. In response to Wayfaring MD’s post, I thought I would share what I actually bring with me. These are my standard issue items, with room for switching or adding more items as needed:

  • Satchel
  • Pocket evaluation forms: For clinical skills and procedures.
  • Pocket Medicine: A compact book for diagnostics, investigations and laboratory values.
  • Two clipboards: The first contains regular paper for note taking including pre-printed progress notes and other chart-related forms; the second contains preceptor documentations including more formal evaluation sheets, outcomes checklists as well as my weekly schedule.
  • The notepad: Where I write and gather my patient information and keep the to-do list for the patients I am responsible for.
  • Moleskin notebook: Where I keep rotation specific clinical pearls and other tips and tricks.
  • Two pens: Always keep a back up pen. Always.
  • Pen light: For the quick neurological screen.
  • ID cards
  • Three packs of lubricating jelly: Need to do a digital rectal exam or a bimanual exam? Gloves are everywhere but these are not.
  • Access codes and contact list
  • Juice box
  • Two granola bars
  • Pager: How I wish this could not be standard issue.
  • Stethoscope: If I am not walking around with it around my neck, it goes back into the bag until its next calling.

Other items that I will sometimes include are rotation specific pocketbooks, headphones, and my phone charger to name a few.

To the medical readers, what do you carry with you? Tag your response with #what’s in your pocket.

Monday.
My hopes this morning were dashed as soon as I took a breath. A stuffy nose. Achoo! I had not yet fully recovered.
I went to work sounding a little worse for wear and it only went downhill from there. My voice got hoarser, my throat felt raspier, my urge to cough grew greater. 
I felt miserable. Yet here I was, seeing patients in the emergency department. I developed a metric for the patients I saw: if you felt and looked better than me, you were probably not sick enough to stay in hospital.
Worked like a charm.
And I still feel terrible.

Monday.

My hopes this morning were dashed as soon as I took a breath. A stuffy nose. Achoo! I had not yet fully recovered.

I went to work sounding a little worse for wear and it only went downhill from there. My voice got hoarser, my throat felt raspier, my urge to cough grew greater. 

I felt miserable. Yet here I was, seeing patients in the emergency department. I developed a metric for the patients I saw: if you felt and looked better than me, you were probably not sick enough to stay in hospital.

Worked like a charm.

And I still feel terrible.

Turning Twenty-Five.
Year twenty-four has been a year of firsts and a year full of surprises. It has been the year I have grown the most as a medical student. It has been the year I have grown the most as a person. It has been the year I dedicated my life to be with my partner. 
I would characterize that as being a good year. We will see what the next year has in store.

Turning Twenty-Five.

Year twenty-four has been a year of firsts and a year full of surprises. It has been the year I have grown the most as a medical student. It has been the year I have grown the most as a person. It has been the year I dedicated my life to be with my partner. 

I would characterize that as being a good year. We will see what the next year has in store.

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
T.S. Eliot
Scheduling Balance.
Readers often ask me and I often talk about finding balance while being in medical school. It helps improve your learning, your productivity, and your lifestyle while preventing burn out. This is however - as I know first hand - easier said than done. 
Today, I thought I might talk about one of the tools I use to scheduling balance: the calendar. We have all seen it; many of you might even use it on a day to day basis. It comes in many forms, from the large poster boards on your wall, to the agenda you carry in your bag, to the phone you carry in your pocket. 
The balance I strive for is easily overcome by the demands of medicine. There is no shortage of work, calls, and rounds to attend if I was so inclined. To prevent this bias, my schedule has to be balanced by the counter argument: the personal events and interests. If there are important events or activities I would like to do, I waste no time putting them in, no matter how trivial it is.
To have the calendars visible at all times side by side, reinforces the importance and interplay they have with each other. No calendar is more important than the other. 
Since I am in a relationship, I have found the digital calendar that syncs between my computer and phone to be the best fit for me. Not only can I add activities and events from either device at any time, I also have access to my partner’s calendar and she mine, making it easier to plan get togethers.
Scheduling balance works best when you are willing to put in the time to creating and maintaining your calendar as well as checking it regularly to make the most of your planning. Depending on how often you choose to do both, your mileage with the calendars may vary.
With a calendar well stocked and at your side at all times, you can easily check before you say “yes.” At the end of the day, life balance cannot be achieved no matter what tools you use if you cannot confidently say “no.”

Scheduling Balance.

Readers often ask me and I often talk about finding balance while being in medical school. It helps improve your learning, your productivity, and your lifestyle while preventing burn out. This is however - as I know first hand - easier said than done. 

Today, I thought I might talk about one of the tools I use to scheduling balance: the calendar. We have all seen it; many of you might even use it on a day to day basis. It comes in many forms, from the large poster boards on your wall, to the agenda you carry in your bag, to the phone you carry in your pocket. 

The balance I strive for is easily overcome by the demands of medicine. There is no shortage of work, calls, and rounds to attend if I was so inclined. To prevent this bias, my schedule has to be balanced by the counter argument: the personal events and interests. If there are important events or activities I would like to do, I waste no time putting them in, no matter how trivial it is.

To have the calendars visible at all times side by side, reinforces the importance and interplay they have with each other. No calendar is more important than the other. 

Since I am in a relationship, I have found the digital calendar that syncs between my computer and phone to be the best fit for me. Not only can I add activities and events from either device at any time, I also have access to my partner’s calendar and she mine, making it easier to plan get togethers.

Scheduling balance works best when you are willing to put in the time to creating and maintaining your calendar as well as checking it regularly to make the most of your planning. Depending on how often you choose to do both, your mileage with the calendars may vary.

With a calendar well stocked and at your side at all times, you can easily check before you say “yes.” At the end of the day, life balance cannot be achieved no matter what tools you use if you cannot confidently say “no.”

Sleepy or Hungry?

There are some days on the ward where I feel both. However, if I could go through a day feeling only one, I would choose being sleepy rather than hungry. I simply cannot stand not having food.

Which would you rather feel?