Tuesday, April 28, 2009

More thoughts on GP land

My second rotation is going well, although I have decided that being a GP is not for me. I like the staff, the patients are generally lovely, but the style and content of work is just not in-depth or precise enough for me to be comfortable.

One of the reasons that I love psychiatry is that you get to focus on why people do the things that they do that may be causing their problems - is it their personality style, their personal history, their particular pathology or most likely a combination of all of the above and other things? It is all an important part of the diagnosis.

In GP you can look at this briefly, but it often is not the focus of the consultation - people want to fix the problem, preferably with a pill or quick-fix, and then move on in the space of a 15-minute consultation, possibly with a follow-up in a week's time if the antibiotics haven't worked well enough.

You get to manage chronic and serious illness, but often with the assistance of specialists who ultimately call the shots. 

It is more about managing the lives and basic healthcare of your patients. If you love looking after the whole healthcare of a person and managing their care, GP would be your cup of tea. If you love sitting in an office and telling people how it is, and how to manage their lives, make steps to lose weight, take multivitamins before they get pregnant, get their flu shots and manage colds, look in ears, test for more serious illness and then refer when you find something, you might enjoy it.  

I'm a little bit too avoidant and obsessive to be happy or comfortable doing this. I also like being more specific in my focus.

I like understanding my patients and spending time on this. I also like looking at the specifics of pathology in imaging and pathology slides. It is probably because I love understanding why things happen the way that they do, and observing changes, that I enjoy these specialties. I know that they are quite different from each other, and that is okay. I think it is more important to look at what I enjoy and am good at and why I like it than make any decisions at the moment. Hopefully this will lead to doing something that I'll be happy with for the rest of my working life. 

Knowing myself, I just wouldn't be happy as a GP, which is a bit of a shame on one hand, but a relief on the other. :) 

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Life is better in close-up #1

Candida is so much prettier when viewed through a microscope.

In real life, not so pretty. I'm not going to post a link to a picture for that. 

If you are looking for random path pictures, Flickr is a wonderful source for high-quality photos. Thanks to the series I just linked to, I now actually understand what they are looking for in a pap smear. :)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

More excitement

I love pictures. I love pathology.

Imagine my delight when I stumbled across: 

Monday, April 20, 2009

Guineapigs do it, too

Torticollis, that is.

The picture is courtesy of Wikipedia, resource for all that is anecdotal and tangential in the world of knowledge.

If only

I wish that somebody somewhere would invent a product like "Ego Boost For Med Students" in a can, and we could utilise it on days when our ego takes a bit of a bruising. 
No, I'm not talking about beer, although it could be a good substitute. ;)
(Yes, ego bruising is part of the learning process and we all need to know more than we do. However, it would be nice to only feel like this for five minutes, drink a can of Ego Boost, and then get on with the job of learning.)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

New Career Observations

I'm still not entirely sure what I want to do, but I don't want to spend my day:
  • Being coughed on by 4-year-olds;
  • Doing pap-smears;
  • Giving vaccinations;
  • Reassuring parents that every normal lump, bump or colouring on their child is indeed normal while then let their child do every possible dangerous thing accessible in the room.
I just don't think I'm a patient enough person to work in General Practice (aka Family Medicine).
I have a lot of respect for the people who do work in that area, but it just isn't for me. 
I am also fighting off the second infection in a fortnight, probably from kids who don't wash their hands or cover their mouths when they go into a big fit of coughing. Why does it always hit on the weekend? 

Monday, April 13, 2009

Best. Cookbook. Title. Ever.

Veganomicon, by Isa Chandra Moskowitz.

Of course, if you aren't going to ever hold the book in your hands, there are some sample recipes attached to the above link. Because we all love free sample recipes. ;)

I have loved her first two cookbooks (I'm a little behind), gave the first one to just about every family member who owns a kitchen, and can't wait to try this one. 

Who would have believed that Marieke Hardy would have brought it up on a book review show, The First Tuesday Book Club (another brilliant show)?  Wonders will never cease.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Sleepy Time

Things are going well, I'm just too tired to blog. I'm not even using my fancy new camera. :(

GP land is fascinating, but I enjoy the psych side of things most of all, and you don't get enough time to analyse that in much detail in one visit, particularly if it isn't what they are there for. I also miss the contact with other students on a day-to-day basis. It is nice to be around people who are as clueless as me, as it normalises my current state of not knowing everything. 

I think that I have also picked up a couple of minor bugs in the past fortnight, but my previously-fortified hospital-staff constitution is pretty good at heading them off at the pass before they really kick in. Lucky me.