Family Medicine Rotation has come and gone for me. I cannot believe how quickly those eight weeks went by. What a crazy, awesome, whirlwind of an experience! Here’s a summary of what I did:
Week 1= Orientation
Week 2= Palliative Care
Week 3= Clinic
Week 4 and 5= hospital service
Week 6 and 7= Rural medicine in Tahoka, TX
Week 8= Clinic and study time—- exams
Overall, I had a good experience. It is amazing how much the attending you are working with can make or break your time on the rotation. During one of my hospital service weeks I had an absolute grump of an attending who looked like a turtle and was pretty much just as quiet as a turtle. I got almost nothing out of that week. He was not very willing to teach or ask questions so we ended up just following the team around silently. The second week of hospital service though I had a wonderful attending named Dr. Morales. He would work through cases with us and help us figure out treatment plans. He made us give little presentations during rounds which was super helpful! I talked about absence seizures because I had a fourteen-year-old girl come in with a history of epilepsy. The whole point is that if you can teach the subject, then you probably understand it and will remember it…I’d have to say it’s true.
My time out in Tahoka was pretty neat! I worked with Dr. Freitag in his clinic for two weeks. His office staff includes a secretary, a nurse, and himself. It’s definitely a small town kind of practice. I got to do a lot of patient histories and physical exams which was really nice. I don’t know that I learned a ton of new stuff while I was there but I got really comfortable speaking to patients and got to see a lot of normal ears, listen to normal hearts, listen to normal lungs. This may sound silly but ya can’t recognize abnormal if ya don’t know what normal is. There was one day where all we did were physicals so I am now rather efficient at physical exams!!!! As much as I disliked the driving time, I was sad to say goodbye to Dr. Freitag, his family (they were up there a lot helping out), and his nurse.
We finished up the rotation with an OSCE (you are graded on your ability to do a history, physical exam, and treatment plan on a standardized/hired patient) and an NBME (National Board of Medicine Exam) over Family Medicine. I don’t know how I did yet but I’m pretty sure they went alright. It’s amazing to me how accustomed I’ve become to feeling like a dumbass haha. I used to freak out about making a low “A” but now if I don’t come out of an exam in tears, I call that a success. My oh my how things have changed :)
Went up to Amarillo for the weekend and saw my friends. We watched the Tech game on Friday and made pizzas. Saturday we went to Wonderland (I frikin love amusement parks), ate dinner, got ice cream at the one and only Braum’s, and saw “We’re the Millers” which was hilarious. Then I let all the kiddos spend the night at my house Sunday evening. We made cookies, had a fashion show, played with modeling clay, ate chocolate fondue, watched movies, swam, and I’m sure we did other stuff too. They are so fun to be around and they’re growing up so quickly. I’m a lucky person to have such an awesome nephew and nieces!!! They sure do bring a whole lot of joy to my life :) Oh and I started playing ultimate frisbee with some med students and their friends on Monday nights. I thought I would be embarrassingly awful at it but as it turns out, I’m not. I mean, I’m in no way saying that I’m an asset to the team haha but I can keep up for the most part! It’s a ton of fun. Now I know why it got so popular.
Today marked the beginning of my surgery rotation. We did a bunch of orientation stuff today, got books, listened to speakers, blah, blah, blah. Then this afternoon we learned how to scrub in and gown. This seems like it would be pretty straightforward…ummmm well it’s not. At one point I got my hands stuck inside my gown and coudln’t get them out into my gloves. I also ripped the arm of my gown. I’m gonna need some more practice haha. Then we did a workshop on knot tying and suturing. I’ve come a long way but I still have a lot to learn and many hours of practicing ahead of me in order to suture on people…cuz right now I’d make someone look like Frankenstein if I tried to sew them up. This week I’ll be on night call which means I’ll go in at 5 pm and stay until 7:30 the next morning. I’m trying to make myself stay awake for awhile tonight to sleep in late tomorrow and try to switch my nights and days. I spent a good portion of my evening making snacks to keep in my white coat pockets. I am going to try this new diet thing to try and calm down all the inflammation in my GI tract. It’s called the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (http://www.breakingtheviciouscycle.info/). A friend of mine has suffered with Ulcerative Colitis for years and she swears by this diet. She did it for about a year and is now symptom free and her last colonoscopy came back completely normal. Sooooo I’m gonna give it a go. It’s very scientifically sound with a lot of research and patient success stories to back it up. It’s basically a Paleo diet (no grains) with more restrictions. For example, the only dairy products you can consume are yogurt you make yourself (you have to ferment it for 24 hours to get rid of all the lactose), dry curd cottage cheese, and aged cheeses. You also can’t eat many, many other things one of those being CHOCOLATE eeeeek. That’s the hardest part I’m pretty sure. The whole point of the diet is to eliminate foods that tend to cause inflammation in people, get rid of bad gut bacteria, and reintroduce healthy gut flora. I had already cut out most dairy and grain products before because they tended to upset my stomach but now this gives me even more drive to continue doing so. I also love cooking and experimenting in the kitchen so it’s been a fun lil science experiment :) It makes rotations a bit harder though because you have very little time to eat so most people tend to bring granola bars and also scrounge for whatever food they can find around the hospital/clinic. I can’t do that…sooooo I made a bunch of bars and froze them. I’ll just load down my pockets every morning and hope for the best!
I am beyond excited to start surgery!!! I have always been fascinated by it so I guess the next eight weeks will tell me if it is something I want to pursue as a career. I’ll keep yall posted!
Assuming I followed these recipes, (I mostly did…kind of) here are the bars I made if you’re curious:
(except no chocolate chips) http://www.againstallgrain.com/2012/02/10/dark-chocolate-peanut-butter-granola-bars/