21 10 / 2014
Anonymous said: What happens to the medical students who don't match into a residency program?
Hey there! Oh man, I literally had a nightmare about this last night, haha. But that’s how all of us feel during the residency application process. :)
So there are two chances to match into a residency. The first is The Big One, on Match Day, which will be 3/20/15 for this cycle. You’ll get an email before that day to let you know that you’ve matched.
Now, if you don’t get that email, you go into a second match called the SOAP (Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program). That’s when you and your school start making calls and video conferences to whatever programs have empty spots left. Sometimes this works out, sometimes people are disappointed.
If this still doesn’t work out, people may opt to prepare their applications for next year’s residency application or look into other jobs where one doesn’t necessarily need to be a practicing MD but the knowledge of an MD is very important: health insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, consulting firms,
Already having stress dreams about this too!!
20 10 / 2014
20 10 / 2014
daniyell said: Hi! I've been following your blog for sometime now and have really enjoyed the perspective from the other side of the hospital bed. I just spent the last year battling rectal cancer and have recently "won". I'm preparing to go back to school to finish my fine arts undergrad, but I have this bell ringing in my ear about med school now. I don't think I've taken a math or science course in 8 years. I'm bright and my grades are stellar- but where would I even begin approaching this change?
First off, you are such a hero. You beat cancer! That is INCREDIBLE.
Second, like any huge task, you tackle it one small bit at a time until you get to your goal. Start with the into classes. Then move on to the next level classes. Then the upper level classes. Then you take the MCAT (crush it, obvs) and apply - not necessarily in that order. Then you interview. Then you get in. Mix in there some volunteering, some campus organizations or a sport or something, and art. Always always art. It’s going to be your life saver in the middle of pre-med prereq madness.
Or, there is always the option to finish your fine arts degree and then come back for a pre-med post-bac program, which usually have a connection with a medical school.
Look. It doesn’t matter how long ago you took a math or science course. You said it yourself, you are bright. You are clearly determined. You beat cancer- something that could have killed you- this school business is small fry shit comparatively. I am not worried about you doing well, I have full faith you’re going to be brilliant.
20 10 / 2014
quarkynerdbrain said: I've wanted to be a doctor for a long time and I've done a lot of shadowing and volunteering in the field, which cemented that want. I'm currently a freshman in undergrad and I'm having a really hard time with Chem 101. Do you have any tips?
- Get a tutor. Pretty much all colleges have free tutoring available. And, once you’ve got a tutor, try the teach-back method where they will explain something to you and you have to explain it back to them.
- Do the homework. A lot of times the test questions are almost the exact same things the homework was over. Get the answer book (are there still answer books?) and go over your completed homework so you can see what you missed and why.
- Figure out your learning style and do what you have to. If you are audio, see if you can record your professors lectures and listen to them; or read your textbook aloud. If you are visual, find graphs and diagrams explaining things, sit really close to the board so you can see. If you are kinetic, draw everything out, walk around while you study. Most people are a mixture, so figure out what works best for you.
- Flashcards for terms and concepts. If there are learning objectives, type those bad boys up, because a lot of test material comes from the learning objectives.
- There have to be apps for this by now. I am just too old to know them (apps didn’t really exist when I took Chem 101).
- Get a study group. Quiz each other. Pool resources. Take turns bringing muffins.
You got this!!
20 10 / 2014
divinelyorchestrated said: How did you find shadowing/research opportunities? I'm considering applying for BS/MD programs, but I can't seem to find sufficient shadowing and research experiences, especially because I'm a sophomore in high school.
I never shadowed or did research in undergrad… or high school (I was really busy reading manga and flirting with older boys back then). ladykaymd posted awhile back that she just emailed a bajillion labs that were doing things she was into and someone got back to her, but I’m pretty sure that was in college. Research is my least favorite thing ever, kudos to everyone who does it and helps science advance.
Unfortunately, I think it will be hard to find research opportunities in high school unless you have a connection somewhere- like a teacher or family member or friend who is doing it or knows someone. Also, for what it’s worth, it’s totally ok to not be flipping out about finding research opportunities when you are in high school and enjoy your teenage years. Balance is important and if you can get it on lock before college you will be so much better off.
20 10 / 2014
Anonymous said: Hello aspiringdoctors! I'm currently a first year med student and I just finished my first semester in medicine (hopefully, I've done enough to advance to the second semester). In any case, I would like to ask, what are your tips in avoiding being "burned-out"? After a stressful last year in college with thesis and a non-cooperative partner I immediately proceeded to med school and I've noticed that I haven't been motivated at all and was out of juice majority of the sem. Waving hi from the PH.
That sounds like A LOT and I totally understand why you’re feeling the way you do! Basically, burnout happens when you don’t take a break and keep going until you’ve completely exhausted yourself. It sounds like you didn’t have much of a chance to take a break before starting med school, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start now!
Breaks can be long or short depending on your needs. For example, I am like the prius of breaks. It really doesn’t take much for me to feel recharged unless I am wayyyy overdue (it happens). So, going for a 30 minute run, or cleaning, or cuddling the Cabbage/kittens/Edie, or watching an episode of a show (SAILOR MOON), or taking a short nap, or playing on tumblr for a bit is enough to tide me over. Maybe you need to take one evening off a week or set a time every night where you stop studying and spend the next x amount of time winding down and relaxing. Even meditating for 5 minutes a day can help ward off the evil burnout demons.
Sometimes it can be really hard to take a break because you feel so much pressure to study ALL THE TIME. I get it, I feel that pressure too. But, you just have to remind yourself that taking a break will ultimately help you maintain your stride so you don’t collapse into a puddle of Gilmore Girls marathoning anxiety ball right before an exam. Taking a break is one of the nicest things you can do for yourself in med school.
It gets better, hang in there!
19 10 / 2014
knvb said: What's your differential: 2 day history of sudden onset severe headache associated with photophobia, nausea, vomiting once the day before, neck stiffness and bilateral positive babinski signs. The patient is afebrile and has all normal vital signs and no focal neurological deficits other than the babinski previously mentioned. No papilledema either. I'm think subarachnoid hemorrhage but the 2 day history is throwing me off
19 10 / 2014
Good lord, the digestive system is much less stimulating than the neuro block was.
I see what u did there
19 10 / 2014
"Every day you get to sleep, study, or have a social life, but you can never do more than one thing per day."