medschool

Tips and Tricks for Your Next USMLE Step 1 Test

First of all I’d like to say that I am not the expert. I’m not even AN expert (of anything). Reading this article will not magically make you score a 260+ on Step 1. However, it might help to quell some rising panic which will DEFINITELY improve your chances because less stress = increased ability to relax and allow your brain to do its thing! With that said, here is some advice I found helpful during the dark period that was Dedicated Study Period. It’s ok to not use First Aid. I know saying this basically borders on blasphemy and that First Aid is literally “the bible” of step studying but it is simply one resource among many and it will work for some and not for others. Some people will swear by First Aid, others don’t even read through more than a few pages. I think it’s really up to you and whether or not you find it helpful. I personally found that reading straight through as had been recommended to me was a waste of time. Instead, I ended up using it more as a summary review after I had already gone over the concepts to help cement some of the more-high yield details. Set a goal. I don’t mean in a vague way like ‘ OMG I have to do better than the 240s or my...

QUIZ: Brush Up Your Skills and Knowledge on First Aid!

Test your knowledge on how well you know first aid! You could save a life! First aid is one of the most important skills you can have. Just by performing some basic procedures or following best advice, you can save someone’s life. You may have learned some first aid at school, but is your knowledge up to date? Would you know what to do in an emergency? Yes, it can be very scary when a medical emergency happens in front of you, but if you know how to handle the situation and keep a person alive and calm until an ambulance arrives, then you could save a life or prevent more serious injuries from occurring. So many deaths and injuries can be prevented, so isn’t it worth brushing up those skills? Source:...

5 “First Class” Medical Schools

The expansion of medical schools in the United States is in full effect, addressing the projected shortages of physicians in the United States. These are the 5 new medical schools welcoming their inaugural classes this month. These students are the first ever to learn at their school. No pressure. 1. UC Riverside School of Medicine University of Californnia Riverside School of Medicine is the first medical school to be established in California in several decades. Its first class, consisting of 50 students, started on August 5. The allopathic school is the sixth in the University of California system. Administrators say they plan to emphasize the need for physicians in the inland southern California region, which is largely underserved. The building cost $25 million and the launch required approximately $100 million from the community.   2. Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine  Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine is located in Buies Creek, North Carolina, focusing on underserved and rural areas. The inaugural class consists of 162 students, and at full enrollment the school expects to have about 600 students. Campbell is North Carolina’s first new medical school in 35 years. After graduation, students could begin residencies at Southeastern Regional Medical Center in Lumberton, Cape Fear Valley Medical Center in Fayetteville and WakeMed in Raleigh. The facility costed $35 million. 3. Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine  Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine welcomed...

5 Things You Need to Know About First Year

As August begins, all those anxious MS1s are entering into the world of “almost” docs. But what happens after the white coat ceremony? Here are the top 5 things I learned from my first year of med school. 1. Life revolves around school. From the very first day of anatomy lab until the final musculoskeletal exam, my life revolved around the next upcoming exam on the curriculum calendar. There was a certain amount of studying that needed to be done every day, and taking unnecessary days off created multiple dreaded 10+ hour study days. Unquestionably, medical school pushed me to manage my time more efficiently than anything in college. And while life did revolve around school, I tried my best to not make my life become just staring at power points. Just like my classmates and I become more efficient at studying, we squeezed as much fun as we could out of those windows of freedom, no matter how small they were.   2. Medical education is adapting to the digital age. Of all the scheduled class time during the year, I attended less than 25% of in-class lectures. WesternU COMP does a great job of being flexible with different learning styles, and the option to watch recorded lectures fit perfectly into my learning style. Instead of sitting through a 4-hour lecture, I could playback the lecture at 2x speed...

Choosing a Medical Speciality Based on Your Personality

When people ask me what I want to be when I grow up, I tell them I’m going to be a doctor. Then, I have a mini-existential crisis when I realize I’m 22 years old and almost a full-blown “grown-up.” Usually, after that, they ask me what kind of doctor I want to be. And then I have another crisis because I don’t really know what I’m going to specialize in. Sure, there are certain specialties that I’m drawn to. But, isn’t it too early to tell? And, how am I really supposed to know, considering there’s so many specialties to choose from?   I know, I know, there’s really no need for me to panic. It’s not until your third year of medical school that you actually start rotations, so there’s plenty of time to find the specialty that suits you. But, regardless, I’m still very fascinated by what speciality I’ll end up in, and I often day-dream about the types of illnesses I’ll be treating as a physician.   I’ve asked the doctors I shadowed about what drew them to their specific specialty. One of the answers that really stood out to me was that each speciality has a certain personality type—you’re often drawn to a specific speciality based on whether you possess its distinct personality.   It turns out many people use this personality-specialty match to figure out...

How Do I Make Such An Important Decision?

As a fresh first year medical student, every upperclassman I talked to said the same thing: “Don’t worry about Step 1 and residency right now. You still have a long way to go. Just enjoy your life right now!”   Finally looking forward to wrapping up my first year in a few weeks, the feeling of impending doom is slowly encroaching on me. In exactly a year from now, I will be taking probably the most important exam of my life. And in 2 years from that point, I will know where I will be going for the next phase of my training – residency. So the most obvious question is – what do I want to do with the rest of my life? Let’s try to break down this complex, loaded question into a few basic steps.   1. Medicine or surgery? Image: Source   As a growing medical student, this is the first question you need to ask yourself. Medicine and surgery are the two prongs of the medical field. Are you the kind of person who loves the operating room and cannot imagine living outside it or can you survive without ever operating?   It goes without saying that this is a hard decision to make so early on in your career. You have barely stepped into the medical community and you are already expected to...

Quiz! Do You Know Your Diseases?

As a medical practitioner, you need to be able to look at symptoms to help you diagnose a patient. It can be difficult without a full examination but some indicators can help you guess the most likely disease. Do you think you could diagnose correctly? Are you the next Dr House? The next medical Sherlock Holmes? Let’s find out! Featured From Gap Medics Blog Featured Image:...