Improving medical students

Archive for April, 2009

Forum Filter: Living with Diabetes

Posted by medliorator on April 30, 2009

K2: there was the time when I was a waitress in college at a Seafood joint… The staff ate dinner at 4:30pm and the restaurant opened at 5pm.

There was one bathroom in the place and it was dark &”rustic” with a single light bulb hanging from the ceiling. I ate my chowder & went in the bathroom to give myself a quick injection after the meal. Don’t remember why I injected after the meal though.  I held the needle up to the light, and starting flicking the syringe for air bubbles. I remember thinking, “Wow, I look like a drug addict in a shooting den.”
My thoughts were quickly confirmed when the door swung open and a woman looked at me in complete HORROR!  My 19 year old self quickly said,” I’m a diabetic, I shoot insulin, not drugs!!” She just ran out the door.  I left the bathroom & didn’t have a chance to dwell on what had just happened because my boss told me my first table was seated.  Guess who was sitting at the table with her family???
YES, I had some explaining to do!
In the end, we all laughed about it & THEY LEFT A HUGE TIP!

Diabetes April Fool’s: Send Us Your Funnies and Win! [Diabetes Mine]

Posted in Tips & Advice | Comments Off on Forum Filter: Living with Diabetes

Treating Swine Flu

Posted by medliorator on April 26, 2009

Can the swine flu be treated with antiviral drugs?
Like some garden-variety flu, this swine flu is resistant to two drugs known as amantadine and rimantadine… CDC says Tamiflu and Relenza work against this strain of swine flu, the WSJ reports.

Does the flu vaccine protect against the swine flu?
The CDC reported earlier this week that the seasonal flu vaccine “might not” provide protection against the flu. The agency says it has created a “seed vaccine” specifically tailored to this swine flu. That could be used to manufacture a targeted vaccine if officials deem it necessary to do so.

Health Blog Q&A: Swine Flu in the U.S. and Mexico [WSJ]

Posted in News, Pharmacology | Comments Off on Treating Swine Flu

Midwives and Prescriptions

Posted by medliorator on April 26, 2009

The Pennsylvania Board of Nursing has published regulations implementing a 2007 law which gives nurse midwives the authority to prescribe, administer, and dispense drugs pursuant to collaborative agreement with a physician. The law and regulations also apply to medical devices, immunizing agents, and laboratory tests.  In order to obtain prescriptive authority, nurse midwives must hold a master’s degree or equivalent, have national certification, and complete at least 45 hours of advanced pharmacology coursework and 16 hours of continuing education in pharmacology every two years.

Pennsylvania Gives Nurse Midwives Authority to Prescribe [Physician Law]

Posted in News, Pharmacology | Comments Off on Midwives and Prescriptions

How to Handle Criticism as a Medical Student

Posted by medliorator on April 25, 2009

Accept self-criticism properly – It has taken my entire first year, a new way of studying and a doubling of my efforts to finally become “average.” …As I got to know my classmates more, my past achievements and experiences in comparison seemed to be insignificant. There was always someone who would be smarter, more talented, more sociable, harder working, athletic, or better than me at certain activities. This can do terrible things to your self-esteem.

Instead of just focusing on the negatives, you must take time to appreciate all your own accomplishments, even if they seem insignificant to others. Compare yourself to yourself. If everyday, you can wake up and be a better person than you were yesterday, you have already made progress.

Separating the Critic from the CriticismNo one loves a messenger of bad news, so please don’t shoot the messenger! For the most part, your preceptors and professors are on your side… Don’t always handle criticism with a hostility. A enthusiastic and humble attitude makes the difference between a frustrating comment and an opportunity to grow.

Handling Criticism [Medaholic]

Correlate: How to Utilize Criticism

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AirStrip OB for iPhone/Smartphone

Posted by medliorator on April 24, 2009

This AirStrip OB application provides the capability for physicians (Obstetricians) to use their PDA’s or Smart Phones to remotely access real-time fetal heart tracings (“strips”), maternal contraction patterns and other critical data from hospital labor and delivery units. This is accomplished through the AirStrip OB software, which is installed onto a mobile handheld device and utilizes a wireless internet connection (cell, WiFi, Bluetooth) to receive the patient’s data. Physicians then use PDA’s, SmartPhones or PC’s that are loaded with AirStrip OB software to remotely and securely access real-time and historical waveform and numeric data via a wireless internet connection.

AirStrip OB

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Secrets to Medical School’s First Year

Posted by medliorator on April 23, 2009

1. Figure out your learning style and figure it out fast… sometimes students find out that their way of studying isn’t working and instead of changing their approach, they go at it harder.

2. Seek help. Students who make it into medical school are used to being near, if not at, the top of their respective classes. It might be hard to ask for help. If you need help, put aside your pride and ask for it.

4. Study hard. Push yourself — at least through the first semester. Then, you can decide how much you can afford to pull back while still attaining acceptable (in your eyes) scores. It’s easier to “ease off the throttle” because you’re studying more than you need to, than to “floor the pedal” trying to catch up at the end of the school year.

Lessons Learned From First Year [Jeffrey MD]

Posted in Study Tips | 1 Comment »

General Treatment Strategies of the ICU

Posted by medliorator on April 20, 2009

Although care for each patient in the ICU is customized, there are general treatment strategies that are used by all trauma and critical care physicians in treating severely injured patients

On the transfer to the trauma bay, the patient would receive packed red blood cells. Upon arrival in the trauma bay, a series of diagnostic and therapeutic events take place.

The classic teaching for trauma surgeons upon arrival of a patient in the trauma bay is evaluating a patient using the protocol is known as the ABC’s  [airway, breathing, and circulation].

A patent airway is needed for the patient to be ventilated and oxygenated. …if the airway had not been placed in the field, it would be done immediately either by intubation or cricothyroidotomy.

The assessment of breathing is an assessment of the function of the lungs. …Loss of lung sounds in one or both lungs are a sign of pneumothorax, hemothorax, tension pneumothorax, and malposition of the endotracheal tube in one of the main stem bronchi.

Circulation is assessed by the heart rate of the patient and the systolic and diastolic blood pressure. …The blood pressure is taken initially manually by sphygomanometer (blood pressure cuff), with many trauma programs requiring the first three blood pressure recordings to be manual recordings.

The initial goal in the first 24 to 48 hours is to stabilize the patient in the face of any ongoing blood loss and the likely massive systemic inflammatory response (SIRS) patients that are severely injured undergo.

She would be continued on a ventilator and given pain medication and sedation. A typical regimen would be an around-the-clock infusion of the narcotic fentanyl (i.e., a fentanyl drip) and an around-the-clock infusion of midazolam (Versed).

Chimp Attack Victim Charla Nash Improving in the ICU [Inside Surgery]

Posted in ER | Comments Off on General Treatment Strategies of the ICU

Highlights of a Career in Medicine

Posted by medliorator on April 19, 2009

8. You relieve more than just physical pain. Particularly in primary care, you address your patients’ vulnerability to not just disease, but also to loneliness, fear, and anxiety.

6. You have actual job security. Yes, the recession has hit every sector, including healthcare. But even employed docs who lose a job don’t stay out of work for long, unless they choose to. There are way more people who need doctors than there are doctors.

3. You’re never bored. Boy, it’s always something, isn’t it? Remember the time that woman had her baby in your waiting room? Or the kid who managed to stuff a golf ball up her nose? Physicians have great stories.

The List: Top 10 Reasons to Be Happy You’re a Doctor [Physicians Practice]

Posted in Tips & Advice | Comments Off on Highlights of a Career in Medicine

What to do After the Match?

Posted by medliorator on April 18, 2009

4th year mudphudder shares valuable lessons learned from his own mistakes:

what I should have done in hindsight:

1) get ACLS/ATLS certified ASAP – most of you will take a month off in december or january for interviews, get certified on one of your off days.  Also, most of your medical schools will offer these courses for free, so no excuses.

2) Start looking for residency housing ASAP.  If you know where you will be (to varying degrees of certainty), start looking even before the match.  Look in a few different cities if you have a gut feeling of where on your rank list you will land, but LOOK.

Think Ahead [mudphudder]

Posted in Housing, Matching, Residency | Comments Off on What to do After the Match?

Free Medical Books & Study Guides – Scribd

Posted by medliorator on April 17, 2009

Scribd is a place where you publish, discover and discuss original writings and documents.  Medical students may find some tasty tidbits in this vast archive.

For example,

USMLE – BRS Pathology – Flash Cards


Posted in Pathology, Tools | Comments Off on Free Medical Books & Study Guides – Scribd