5 Must-Read Threads from r/MedicalSchool (Med School Reddit)

Reddit, the social aggregate supernetwork, is one of my guilty vices. Beyond the cats, memes, and “do you even lift?” jokes, though, are an infinite number of small subreddit communities dedicated to insightful discussion. r/MedicalSchool, the subreddit dedicated to medical students, has become one of my favorite sites over the past few months because of the growing sense of community from medical students all over the world. In a sense, it’s a smaller Student Doctor Network with the neuroticism turned way down (although still a bit there, we’re all medical students for a reason). Here is a list of my favorite (and most helpful) threads I have found so far: 1. Any Lifehacks to make life in Med School easier? 2. All done! My guide to medical school, from day 1 through end of third year, ready for download! 3. What are your best YouTube channels/videos for learning medical concepts? List all your favorites! Let’s compile a good collection of video resources. Mine are in the text. 4. In a post-apocalyptic world, which medical specialty would be most useful? 5. AOA and ACGME Move Toward Unified GME...

23 and Me and me Part II: Spit Take

Friday afternoon I dashed off to the post office to pick up a parcel containing, simply, a test tube. Part two of my 23 & Me journey begins. The box contains merely test tube paraphernalia and a small sheet of instructions. I impatiently played with the tube for a half hour, because I had just had a sip of coffee and you can’t give your sample until you’ve had nothing in your mouth for at least a half hour. When you first open the box, you are greeted by a very aggressive note which tells you to STOP! and not do anything else until you register your test tube online– this is, of course, so that you can get your results later on down the road. I eagerly registered and was actually able to use the 23 & Me app on my iPhone to do this, which was pretty neat. While I was waiting for the coffee to leave my spit, I started to fill out the questionnaire too– the first question asked me if I thought I was underweight or overweight. Not a great way to start a conversation, man. Something no one mentions is that it’s actually somewhat difficult to spit as much as you need to into this test tube. There’s a black line that you must fill the test tube too, not including bubbles.  It...

Starting Them Young: Apps for Lil’ Gunners

Kids ask some pretty interesting (sometimes hilarious) questions, and their curiosity demonstrates a strong desire and willingness to learn. So why don’t we teach them more? A new app, created by Tinybop, addresses the curiosity of children by teaching them about the human body. The “Human Body”  is a visual, interactive app that contains animations for the different body systems. Designed to help answer some of the questions children have about their body, Tinybop also provides parents a 22-page handbook that provides more detailed answers for the typical questions asked by children. And, as many fear the consequences of the projected doctor shortage, this app might spark children’s interest in health early on…look out for this new generation of baby docs! Check out how the app works below…   Featured image is screenshot from video...

The Drug That Makes You Smarter, Or Does it?

Adderall was first created to treat impulsiveness and improve focus in people with ADHD and ADD. It has since then been used to treat several disorders, such as narcolepsy. But what are the ramifications of the drug and has its use becoming uncontrollable in our society? Source:...

Could Hibernating Improve Surgical Outcomes?

If I could be a western fat-tailed dwarf lemur – I wouldn’t . But they are really cute and funny little creatures, and we do happen to have one thing in common. We’re both super good at sleeping. The lemur is the closest genetic cousin of humans that hibernates for long periods. And, while humans are not able to hibernate just yet, researchers at Duke University studying these animals believe that by identifying the mechanism these animals use, it could one day be possible AND could have significant health applications. Everyone can appreciate a good night’s sleep – especially med students. And, it’s well known that being well rested provides multiple health benefits: improved cognitive functioning, increased longevity, reduction of inflammation, healthy weight maintenance, stress reduction etc. So what if humans could hibernate? Researchers at Duke University believe that inducing a torpid state in humans could become a good practice in surgeries. Many organs, especially the brain, are extremely sensitive to hypoxia which often occurs when undergoing surgery. In a torpid state, temperature is often reduced during REM sleep, lowering metabolic rate, leading to decreased cellular demand for oxygen. This decreased demand for oxygen could thus reduce the risk of damaging the organs and translate into safer surgeries with more beneficial outcomes. Sounds great. Now how do hibernate? When studying the lemur, researchers discovered that they are the only...

A Prayer that Every AlmostDoc Should Know

John Abele, Co-founder & Director of Boston Scientific, explains how The Serenity Prayer applies to many things in life. He describes its importance and relevance in public health and personal medicine, as the prayer asks for wisdom that is useful in triaging. Read more about John Abele. Videotaped at FutureMed, in February, 2013, at Singularity University.   Featured image taken from Flickr | manoj...

Surgeon Finds Some Patients Don’t Appreciate His Little Experiment With Hugs

Photo by Michaela Kobyakov NORTHBINGER, CA – General Surgeon Jeff Britley, M.D., is touching patients in ways they never imagined.  After last year’s survey at the Northbinger Surgical Center indicated that he seemed “distant” or “rushed” during many patient visits, Dr. Britley made some dramatic changes to his bedside manner and patients have definitely noticed. “I decided I just needed to get in there and get friendly,” says Dr. Britley from his West Covina home where he is currently waiting for the California Medical Board to review complaints made about his new style.  ”Over the past 6 months I’ve revolutionized my bedside manner, making it a point to include healing touch and spacial intimacy in every moment I spend with my patients.” He says he courageously pushed the boundaries of human proximity – a sort of pioneer on the frontiers of physical awkwardness. “I made it my mission to step inside of each patient’s unique comfort zone and linger there… turning a simple hug or handshake into a truly magical and enduring experience.” Those wonderfully tenacious touches have been a source of deep satisfaction to Dr. Britley in his practice of medicine, but have generated no small amount of controversy amongst clinic patients. One patient reported being “very disturbed” by his attempt to lie in the hospital bed beside him while they talked. “He put his arms around me and...