Thursday, November 26, 2009

Done and done!

Well, we are done for the year!

The exam was okay, but really a little non-specific. Thus, whether or not I pass or do brilliantly depends entirely on the marking guide and who looks at my paper.

One of the questions asked us to draw a diagram illustrating the rule of 9s in burns. I feel a little embarrassed that I didn't memorise that one prior to the exam. At least I remembered that the genital area is worth 1% and that the back and front are 9% each (I think). Meh.

Without being immodest, I studied really hard for this one - harder than for any of the other areas. I don't know if it paid off for the exam, but at least I now know a lot more about surgery than I would have otherwise, and feel much more prepared for internship and to be a doctor. After all, isn't that what really matters?

Hopefully we will find out soon whether or not we need a resit. I think my paper would get through a remark if it doesn't pass muster first time. Plus, I don't think I can learn any more than I did, so even if I do need a resit, it won't involve 12 hours of study a day.

Hooray! Bring on Christmas and fourth year!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Study Bunny

I am working my way through multiple textbooks and now the School of Medicine's Voice-Over-Powerpoint presentations.

The surgeons have put some serious effort into these, and they are really good. I'm impressed. :)

In three days time I will be finished third year. Even if I have to repeat surgery (which I would like to think is unlikely), I'll be a fourth year as of next year.

I have been focusing on taking things step by step the whole way this year, so this feels like it has come along really quickly. While I'm excited for the other bloggers and my friends who are finishing fourth year, part of me is still glad that I have another year to consolidate and learn more before I get that MBBS added onto my name.

I have learned so much this year that it is astounding, and I'm looking forward to learning more next year, too. Plus, we get to do paediatrics, emergency and O&G (which I think I get two of due to my med spec choice), which I'm thoroughly looking forward to.

So close!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

So close

I did the take-home exam this afternoon. With the aid of Apleys Concise Textbook of Orthopaedics, and my favourite mentor, Dr Google, I think I passed this one.

Now for the big, nasty exams at the end of next week - the ones that people don't go so well in. I have worked hard this time, so my fingers are crossed.

I just need enough energy to get over the line and it will all be happy dancing and pixies, at least until results come out.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Ploughing on

It has been a week and I feel like I should write another post.

Surgery continues to be trying. I like the staff, but there are so many demands on our time. This would be merely inconvenient by itself, but we also have a large exam looming next week which is well known for its high failure rate.

More than half of the previous group who went through needed to either get their papers remarked or resit a section of the exam.

I am working hard at studying, and have been for the whole rotation, but I hold no illusions. I'm going to walk into this one assuming that it isn't going to be marked so that I'll pass.

In a way, this takes the edge of my anxiety, but makes me cynical and exhausted at the same time. I want to spend my holidays having a break from being a medical student, not studying for a supplementary exam. Oh well. Fingers crossed.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I have really and well and truly had enough of surgery rotation.

If it was just being in the ward and doing ward work and assisting in theatre, it would be fantastic.

It is all of the rest of the crap that I have had enough of.

Just bring on these stupid exams already. I want them done.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Stupid times - when stupid ideas succeed

Tradition has it that there is a curse - "May you live in interesting times."

I don't know what we did in order to deserve the current state of affairs, because proof shows that not only are we in interesting times, but we are in stupid times, too.

Weird stuff has been happening in the past couple of years that reminds me of the kind of things that would happen in the 1980s, and I now think that we live in a decade that is basically 1980s + technology.

For instance, this man, who lives off selling advertising on the front of his t-shirt. Anybody sensible would think that this is a stupid idea, that he needs to get a real job, and that his role in life as a walking billboard would not only fail, but be monumentally unsatisfying and contribute next to nothing to a society already filled to overflowing with the effluent of consumerism and greed.

It is a sign of the times that his business is expanding and he is making a solid profit.

See? It is like the 1980s. Bring back the 1960s, please. I have already lived through the 80s once. It is a shame that there is too much profit in it to force it to go away.

I'm not even talking about other stupid things, like vaccine conspiracy theories, the re-emergence of magnetic therapy, thermal imaging and sensible people being swept away in the flood of bullshit dressed up as fact that can drown the unwary on the internet.

It is the little things that really push us over the edge. It started with crocs. Well, maybe it didn't, but I blame crocs. Somebody came up with an idea for plastic shoes with holes in them, and it took off, and now everywhere I look, I see people who would otherwise be sensible individuals who are wearing the ugliest piece of footwear known to man.

Bare feet make me cringe, but not as much as crocs do.

In a million years when all there is left of the planet is plastic, aliens will arrive, point at the piles of crocs and work out that not only were they the cause of the downfall of civilisation, but that it was fortunate that we were already gone when they got here because creatures who create these have no place in an intelligent solar system.

Yes, I'm bitter. I blame surgery rotation. Bring back psychiatry and GP, please, I want to hang out with patients and talk about care plans, babies and not have to worry about five million eponymous syndromes, and wonder about who the hell Pott was and how he got so many nasty things named after him in amusing ways. (A peculiar tumour AND a puffy tumour? What a legend. If there is a question in the exam that I have no idea about, I will answer, "Percival Pott's puffy tumour.")

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Surgery Rotation, start of Week 5

I am completely and utterly exhausted. Time to take a small break.

The problem with medicine is there is an infinite amount that you can try to study, and a finite amount of time and energy in the day.

Sometimes it does the world of good to take an evening off from study. Fingers crossed that I wake up feeling better tomorrow morning.