Do You Have What It Takes To Be A Future Doctor?

Everyone – from family to neighbors to friends to fellow airplane passengers – impressed when you tell them you’re going to be a doctor. There has always been, and will always be, a certain prestige associated with being a doctor. “You must be really smart,” is the usual reaction to this declaration of my professional pursuit. But, the funny thing, I don’t think I’m smart. In fact, smart is one of the last words I would use to describe myself. I may be a future doctor, which sounds rather smart and noble, but I honestly do not consider myself any smarter than the average person. I am sure there are a handful in the profession that are truly gifted individuals, in general, my classmates are not brilliant. They are just normal people, some with unique hobbies and interests. There is one characteristic among all of us in this profession that is undeniable. And that is grit. We are all hustlers. We stick with it. We not only work hard, but we push our physical limits. We have unwavering self-confidence. We are willing to sacrifice more than most others. Despite the darkness, we know there will be light at the end. We appreciate delayed gratification. It is these traits that make you a doctor. Anyone can develop and practice these traits. Anyone can be a doctor. I was the hardest...

Do Higher Obesity Levels Mean Higher Cancer Chances?

In a world where appearances matter, many people are concerned about their shape or sizes. However, the amount and distribution of body fat content are crucial to your health. According to ASCO Cancer.Net, over two-thirds of adults in America, were overweight; that is in the year 2016. What is obesity you may ask? It is a condition where an individual has unhealthy distribution or amount of fat in the body. Different factors can contribute towards becoming obese as is so in a convincing fellowship personal statement. The factors that contribute to the former include: • Hormones • Environment • Genes • Emotions, and • Cultural factors Individuals who are obese are at a higher risk of severe health conditions, e.g., heart disease, high-blood pressure, diabetes, etc. Obesity and Cancer The measurement often used, to measure one’s obesity level is the BMI, Body Mass Index. It is the ratio of one’s weight, and height and waist measurement. If you have a BMI of 30 and above, you are obese. Normal BMI ranges from, 18.5 to 24.9. It is also important to note that, people who have extensive waist measurements are at risk of contracting various diseases, e.g., heart disease. The regular waist measurement should be 40, 0r 35 inches, and below, for men and women, respectively. Several studies have been conducted to explore why obesity may increase the risk and...

The Success of the Vaping Market

E-cigarettes, also known as ‘vaping’ is one of the biggest growing markets in the world, with the number of consumers increasing from 2.8 million in 2013 to a dizzying 6.1 million in 2016. That’s a rise of 120%! In this piece, we’ll look at who’s vaping, where it’s become the most popular, how the vaping market has boomed, which devices most people are using and even which e-liquid flavors are the most sort after. A JAMA Report claims that Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are becoming increasingly popular among teens. A new study looks at whether younger teens who never smoked cigarettes and who begin using e-cigarettes might be more likely to go on to use conventional tobacco products. Researchers from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles surveyed more than 2,300 Los Angeles area high school students who reported never using tobacco products at the beginning of 9th grade. The students were surveyed again six months later and also when entering the 10th grade. In a comparison of teens who had used e-cigarettes to those who had not, the researchers found that those who had used e-cigarettes were four times more likely to have gone on to use conventional tobacco products, including cigarettes and cigars. The researchers acknowledge that their findings, while suggestive, cannot prove that e-cigarette use directly causes subsequent tobacco use. Infographic Source: Smoke without fire! by Grey...

The Perils of Being a Woman Doctor

As a woman doctor it seems like I can’t book an appointment with a doctor anymore without being asked if I’m okay with seeing a man. OK, they didn’t ask me when I booked an eye doctor appointment. But when I recently scheduled an urgent care visit for a stomach bug that was taking a long time to clear up, they asked me. And the OB/GYN office always asks. Personally, my first pap was done by a man, and I really liked him. My second regular ob/gyn was also a man and also great. Yes, I’m a little more uncomfortable being examined down there by a man, but honestly, it’s uncomfortable either way. It depends on the doctor more than it depends on the gender of the doctor. It’s only a recent thing that there are enough female doctors that patients can even get a choice. What bothers is me is that when they specifically ask me, it makes me feel like maybe I *should* request a woman. Why can’t they just mention the doctor’s name and see if I protest? Also, has a man *ever* been asked if he was okay with the gender of his doctor? At work, I have also been put in positions from time to time where I was pressured to see a patient for no other reason than they had “woman problems,” when...

Do You Want A Smarter Prosthetic Leg?

Researchers at North Carolina State University’s Neuromuscular Rehabilitation Engineering Lab are testing and reprogramming robotic prosthesis software to better adapt to everyday situations. Human joints and muscles behave differently when carrying different loads and while oriented in different positions, so today’s “smart” prosthetics should be able to do the same. Click here to read more about this research from NC State. New North Carolina State University research into wearable robotics shows how amputees wearing these devices adapted when presented with a real-world challenge: carrying a weighted backpack. The results could assist device manufacturers and clinicians expand the utility of these important devices, and could help researchers develop smarter controllers that adapt to real-world demands. Andrea Brandt, a Ph.D. student in the NC State and University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering, wanted to chart a new course of study on powered devices used to help lower-limb amputees walk. While multiple studies on the efficacy of these devices on level ground have been published, there is a paucity of work that tests these devices in more challenging real-world situations, like bearing additional weight when people carry a load – groceries or a backpack, for example. Earlier this year, the Department of Veterans Affairs developed the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency LUKE arm system, for two veterans looking for prosthetic limbs.: US military veterans Fred Downs and Nardi McCauley lost their arms during service to...

Reflecting After Christmas: Oh, What A Merry Time To Be In The Hospital

“Blessed is the season that engages the whole world in the conspiracy of love” ~ Hamilton Wright Mabie Don’t you just love driving around the glowing neighborhoods this time of the year? Those magnificent wreaths and garlands, homes adorned with icicle lights, and bright-lit Christmas trees with dazzling ornaments are such eye candies. Christmas is indeed my favorite time of the year. It is truly magical how this month brings a sense of happy spirit and togetherness among people. Be it in your own home or grocery stores or malls, our ears are instantly tuned to the jingle bell. What makes this season even more special is the privilege of family members coming together under one roof as most everyone gets those days off work. However, medicine is one such field that does not take days off in this peak time of accidents as well as other illnesses. As a matter of fact, holidays are often known to surface some of the most emergent cases. Several studies indicate that, in the United States, more people die in hospitals during Christmas, the day after, and New Year’s Eve. As a medical student observing the “future me” from a distant, I see myself being a little more stressed like most physicians around me. Similar to most people, there is of course cleaning, cooking, and shopping to be done apart from being...

The Medical Professional’s New Year’s Resolutions

For as long as I can remember, my new year’s resolution was to get straight A’s. Now that I am in dental school, I recognize that I want to aspire to do more than just get good grades. These days, I am perfectly content with passing and getting my degree. And I’m excited to make conscious goals for myself that focus on my life outside of academics. I narrowed it down to 5 things that I personally need to work on to have a more well-rounded, balanced lifestyle as a dental student and future medical professional. Drink more water. I recently got my blood drawn for routine bloodwork. Because I did not drink any water after waking up that morning, the nurse could not collect any blood from my veins and she tried 3 times. After being unnecessarily stuck with a needle more times than one, I finally recognized that I must drink more water. If I can get myself to finish a bottle of water on my commute to and from school everyday, I would consider that a drastic improvement. Exercise. I’m pretty sure exercise or “lose weight” is a common new year’s resolution. Even though everyone knows that routine cardio is beneficial, it’s funny how that is the first thing we eliminate from our daily routine as we start to get busy and increasingly stressed out. Exercise...