Sunday, February 17, 2013

End of Patho

When I get stressed out, I bake. Last weekend I made a cake for patho. This weekend I made a Captain America cake and doughnuts....I'm gonna gain a TON of weight.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Standardized Test

Sorry guys this post is a little all over the place. It has a point I promise, though I'm not sure if it's the one I intended to make... 

I've been reading a lot about standardized tests lately seeing as I'm about to take the step this summer. All it's really done has driven home the fact that just because you do well on some test doesn't mean you're a good person or a good doctor. 

I feel like I should delve in to that just a little bit more and explain myself.

-The reason they have standardized tests is so that you're average everyday "I want to be a doctor" idiot doesn't apply and get into medical school only to find out later that it's hard work and you actually have to study. There have to be hoops to jump through. It's the same with first year classes in undergrad, my class started out with at least 70 pre-meds, four years later I was the only one who had graduated with my original degree choice (and the only one who went straight to med school). They have the tests to cut down on the amount of people who apply.

-There's also the fact that different universities have different standards of education. I went to a small state school, and while I think my education was quite good there are probably other schools out there big, or small, public, or private that rate their students on a different scale of difficulty be it easier or harder. So a 3.7 could be equivalent to a 4.0 at some places and a 3.0 at others- it just depends. I imagine this is also why they have the step exam in place; some universities are better than others.

Okay, enough in defense of standardized testing, now it's time to bash it. 

-The MCAT is scored based on how everyone else who took the test at the same time did on the exam. So if Einstein is taking the test the same day as you, you're screwed. I understand that this is in place because some exams might be easier than others, but it's stupid. I want to know what percent I got right and what percent I got wrong! Not how well everyone else who's smarter than me did!

-The MCAT also fails in evaluating empathy. This is a major part of the interview process so evaluating on the MCAT isn't really important. But, there are always those few people who would make good doctors who don't "test well" or might not be good at a certain section in the test who never make it to the interview because their score reflected that deficiency (granted their GPA should help them out of this pickle, but sometimes it's not enough). Even so, I think you have to have a certain level of knowledge to go to medical school so a minimum score should be met! Like I said before, you do have to be semi-smart and motivated to succeed in medical school!!! 

-Some schools prepare students better for standardized tests than others. Testing is an art.

-What exactly does physics have to do with medicine??? I'm in my second year, and I'm still trying to figure it out!

I need to be honest about my own MCAT experiences, please don't judge: 

So I took the MCAT twice, which was stupid on my part. The first time I took it I did pretty well. I'm fairly certain I could have gotten into a school in the US if I wanted (with my GPA being my protective measure). But, I got greedy I wanted a better score to increase my chances. BAD IDEA. Somehow, my score dropped about five points. I looked into how scores are reported and I decided that because BOTH scores are reported to the schools, that applying in the US would be a waste of time and money. On top of that I had already decided that I really wanted to come to Poland. So I only applied here.

The MCAT dictated my future, so it's a pretty important test! I'm not saying this is true of US medical students, but I know people who are going to medical school in the US, some are really great and really smart. Others are really smart and have the common sense and empathy of a dead fish (though, we have a few of them in Poland too...not necessarily in my class...but....yeah...).

A doctor needs to be smart, quick thinking, hard working, able to continuously learn, but they also need to be able to empathize with their patients, talk to them, understand their pain to treat them appropriately. I think that for the most part the med school admission process does a fairly good job at this, even if the MCAT doesn't. Yes, a few bad egg's get through but you can't always be perfect.

At the end of the day I would rather have someone who will hold my hand while I'm dying and listen to me when I talk, than someone who's a jerk. 

Medicine in the study of the human condition, if we eliminate humanity from medicine, what will be left? 

Monday, February 4, 2013

My computer is in the hospital

2 gb white apple, name is Mac recieved injuries following a juice box explosion. Start up time normal, but the keys are a little tacky and his spacebar and delete buttons are unresponsive. Treated with water and alcohol in the field with minimal response. Disassembly and exploratory surgery has been advised, we've got the trauma team standing by. We might need a keyboard transplant...