medschool

How Remus Lupin and Yoda Taught Me the Power of Mentorship

A big part of medical education is mentoring. The term ‘mentor’ originates from Homer’s the Odyssey and refers to an advisor. The roles of mentors vary, but generally serve to guide mentees through work, support them during the process, keep them grounded and focused on the task at hand, and provide general moral support. Over the weekend, at the Pritzker Revisit session on Scholarship and Discovery, our own students stated the number one thing to consider when finding a project was finding a great mentor. How does one find a great mentor? Well, our students are encouraged to seek “CAPE” mentors- think Superhero mentors. The mentor should be Capable, Available, have a Project that is of interest to the student, and Easy to get along with.  Capable means that the mentor has the skills to not only be a good mentor, but also to carry out the task or project at hand. This may sound odd, but sometimes faculty are so excited to have a medical student work for them, they may make the false assumption that the medical student will help them with tasks (i.e. statistics) that they themselves don’t know. Availability is especially important as the number one reason our students state they had a less than optimal experience in the summer doing scholarly work is that their mentor was not available. While availability of all doctors is an issue, the question is often whether...

The 80 Second Refresher on Parts of the Brain… by The Brain

If you’re in need of a a quick 80 second refresher on the parts of the brain, who better to teach you than Brain? (and Pinky, of...

What Does the AOA/ACGME Residency Merger Mean for Medical Students?

In a statement released in late February 2014, the AOA and the ACGME announced they have finally agreed to a single accreditation system for graduate medical education. The surprising news comes on the heels of previously failed negotiations in July 2013. From the official press release:   – From July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2020, AOA-accredited training programs will transition to ACGME recognition and accreditation. – There will continue to be osteopathic-focused training programs under the ACGME accreditation system. Two osteopathic review committees will be developed to evaluate and set standards for the osteopathic aspects of training programs seeking osteopathic recognition. – DOs and MDs would have access to all training programs. There will be prerequisite competencies and a recommended program of training for MD graduates who apply for entry into osteopathic-focused programs. – AOA and AACOM will become ACGME member organizations, and each will have representation on ACGME’s board of directors.   What does this mean for current medical students, MD and DO alike?   – The inevitability of a common match: Given all residency programs will fall under a single unification banner by 2020, a single match process is the next logical step. The current system, which forces DO students to choose between the AOA match in February and ACGME match in March, will be streamlined to allow medical students to apply to all US-based residencies at the same time. There is no exact date for...

Top 6 Ways to Stay Awake in Med School/Residency

As AlmostDocs, you know how precious sleep can be. Whether you’re studying for exams/boards or on another long shift during residency, a lack of sleep is gonna drive your efficiency and performance down the drain. Fortunately, we’ve found some remedies to get you focused.   6. Grab a quick bite, but choose wisely. A recent study in the journal Neuron showed that protein stimulates orexin cells in the brain, which send electrical impulses that keep us alert and wakeful. By comparison, eating a carbohydrate-rich snack boosts your blood sugar and then lowers it just as fast, which can induce that drowsy, can’t-keep-your-eyes open feeling. Quick, work-friendly high-protein bites include a hard-boiled egg, a cup of Greek yogurt, or a handful of pumpkin seeds.   5. Use the power of Smells Use your sense of smell. A pungent scent — good or bad — can make you more alert very quickly. Aromatherapists often recommend essential oils of the following plants to stimulate the nervous system and reduce fatigue. Take a big whiff of the following when you’re feeling drowsy: – Rosemary. – Eucalyptus blue gum. – Peppermint. – Coffee. Beans or brewed, both work: a study has shown that simply smelling coffee can awaken a person. – Of course, not all of us have essential oils stored in our file cabinets. Using hand lotions or burning candles with these same scents could help. Herbs like...

Zohydro: FDA Approves a New Opiate

The FDA just approved a new prescription painkiller, called Zohydro. Similar to medicine’s current favorite painkiller, Oxycodone, but 10x more powerful, Zohydro is expected to be available next month. Considering the epidemic of opiate addiction and over-prescribing of medication, this new approval has many professionals concerned. It’s been developed with chronic pain sufferers in mind– specifically those with cancer–hence the very high dose (upwards of 50 mg in a single pill). Professionals are also concerned about the potential for accidental overdose: a single Zohydro pill contains enough hydrocodone to kill a child, and it would be reasonable to assume, what with patients already struggling to manage multiple medications, there could be fatal accidental overdoses with such a potent medication. Then, there’s the issue of pure tolerance for opioids: someone who hasn’t taken them before could overdose on just two pills. Though the drug may prove to have benefits to chronic pain suffers, hopefully doctors and healthcare practitioners will be properly educated on the risks. In response to the concerns expressed since its approval, the company that created Zohydro has said in a statement that the medication “will come with a warning...

5 Must-Know Eye Conditions for any Opthalmology Exam

While most of the ABIM Examination topics fall neatly into organ system categories, not all of them fit into this schematic. These include: ophthalmology, primary care screening guidelines, vaccinations, etc. Here at Knowmedge, we’ve incorporated this important group of subject areas into General Internal Medicine, similar to the American College of Physicians’ Internal Medicine In-Training Exam Blueprint. Today, in this first of a series of blogs, we review the key eye diseases: Conjunctivitis, Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, Retinal Detachment, and Cataracts. The eyes may see only what the mind knows, but your mind should know these eye conditions for the ABIM exam. The exam is several months away so go ahead and bookmark this page so you can quickly review it once more in the days before you obtain your certification or recertification.   1. Conjunctivitis Conjunctivitis is broken down into viral, bacterial, and allergic conjunctivitis Viral • Usually caused by adenovirus • Having a preceding upper respiratory infection or recent exposure to a person with conjunctivitis are clues to aid in the diagnosis • Acute onset • Usually unilateral redness • Watery discharge is present • Highly contagious • Frequent hand washing must be performed to prevent spread of infection • Supportive treatment including cold compresses and artificial tears. NO role for antibiotic eye drops with viral conjunctivitis   Bacterial • Common causing agents are Staph aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae,...

A Final Thought as American Heart Month Comes to an End

As American Heart Month comes to an end there are a few things doctors and “almost” docs should think about when treating patients at risk of heart disease. The number one consequence of misdiagnosis is jeopardizing patient safety. Of course doctors do everything in their power to protect and better patients’ health; however, when women with heart disease are misdiagnosed, the consequences that doctors face are extremely important to understand. This infographic provides great information about the consequences of misdiagnosis and and ways to prevent that from happening. Protect the patient and protect...