Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Mad Case of Imposter Syndrome

Thank you NotDeadDinosaur of for posting this wonderfully well point and poignant article.

I can promise everyone that all my co-interns have had the exact same conversation over the past few weeks.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Certified Gold

Image from
I finally have the interwebs (super fast interwebs at that, thanks @ATT U-verse)!!! And that means time for a little update.

Thanks to my amazingly wonderful med school I do not have to re-certify in ACLS until May 2012, however, my BLS (aka CPR) certification ends at the end of July... so it was time to re-certify. Now, Wayne State was old school in that for both of these you had to sit through 1-2 days of lectures/ codes or "MEGA-CODES" and then prove to an instructor that you knew what you were doing.

Well, it seems the AHA has since upgraded and digitized... So instead of sitting through lectures, I sat through a bunch of web-modules. And then, instead of just showing people that I knew what to do on a plastic dummy, I had to prove myself on a ultra-sleek super sensitive manikin. And I'm not joking about the super sensitive ("Give smaller breaths", "Give more volume", "Place fingers in the center of the chest."); It seemed impossible to actually do it right and I one point I felt really silly that I was getting mad at a plastic baby manikin. But eventually, with the help of an instructor, we mananged to trick the sadistic little doll into accepting my more than adequate attempts to revive it from it's dull plastic life (no bitterness at all, promise). So, I am now BLS re-certified for 2 more years.

A few days later, me and the other 7 categorical incoming surgery interns headed down to get ATLS certified. This basically means that they trained us in the proper management of trauma patients in order to stabilize them and ship them to whoever it is that is actually going to take care of them (it's geared towards rural docs; in actuality, it means they would be shipping patients to us, and the trauma patients we would be getting would be getting stabilized and/ or sent to the OR).

It was a 2 day course, and the first time we all met each other. It was a lot of lecture, but we had lots of fun learning how to do procedures (i.e. saphenous vein cut-down, chest-tubes, cricothyroidotomy, diagnostic peritoneal lavage, etc). By the end of the second day we were all certified and supposedly ready for the trauma bay (God help us all if we have to run a trauma by ourselves though... but that shouldn't happen anytime soon).

Since then, the days have been filled with functions:
  • Friday was the party at the Chairman's house -- basically a time for us all to meet the attendings and some residents, and for them to meet us; had a wonderful time.
  • Saturday was a small grill-out with some of my co-incoming residents 
  • Sunday one of the outgoing interns had her class and all the incoming interns come over for a get-together to meet, get advice, etc... another great time was had getting to know more people (I feel bad that I don't remember a lot of names, but the past week I've met so many people it seems like a blur).
Today was the first official day of orientation, the additional prelims (urology, ENT, etc) were added to the 8 categorical surgery residents at the departmental orientation. The program director talked through the different rotations/ hospitals to give us an idea of what to expect and what was expected of us. My favorite part was just adding up all the ancillary (i.e. not direct patient care) requirements... mostly just the stuff for studying/ preparing for the ABSITE/ mock oral boards.

At one point I got totally overwhelmed about the reading; Outside of the 12-16 hour shifts we are supposed to read... Totally get that, was already preparing to read, didn't expect anything less. But then she started talking about all the stuff we had to read. In any given week there we are supposed to read:
While I knew and expected all this, putting it all together within a few minutes made my brain want to explode a bit. I know it's possible, but it's going to be tough... But hey, no one said surgery (or any residency) would be easy.

On that note, maybe I should start reading... Hmm.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Moved and Scheduled!

I've now been here for a week, and time has flown. Let's just say I'm glad I got here when I did; I have been so busy running around trying to accomplish things:

  • Unpacking all my stuff - all done!
  • Buying things I didn't have - furniture, toaster oven, knives, etc.
  • Filling out and turning in hospital forms - done, with the exception of one place losing my stuff
  • Doing online training modules for multiple hospitals - there went 10 hours
  • Setting up interwebs - won't really have it for another week, but I managed to avoid Comcast, so I consider this a win
  • Fundamentals of Surgery modules - through the American College of Surgeons, part of the academic side of my training is online modules with patient simulation
  • Tried changing my residence... but apparently a signed lease isn't enough to prove residence here (more than slightly annoyed)
Still left to do in the next couple weeks (more full weeks ahead):
  • Furniture is getting delivered today - hallelujah, no more sleeping on an air mattress
  • BLS recertification - mostly done online already, but I have to go in and prove to a real person I know what I'm doing
  • Appointment at one of the hospitals on Tuesday to finish the stuff I was supposed to do yesterday (but couldn't cause they lost my paperwork)
  • Advanced Trauma Life Support (Wednesday and Thursday)
  • Internet set up - a week from Monday
  • Orientation - a week from Monday and Tuesday
  • Parties - yes, that's right, lots of parties. A few of us interns got together at my place on Thursday (it was supposed to be a BBQ, but a torrential downpour precluding that actually happening). Next Friday there's a party at the Chairman's place and a week from Sunday, on of the second years is throwing a party for the incoming interns.... Oh and I already missed 1 party, cause I was moving in.
Needless to say, moving is no joke and super exhausting. I feel like I've been moving non-stop for the last week... but I've enjoyed it (except for yesterday, which was beyond frustrating).

Oh, and I finally got my schedule for the year and I'm excited:
  • July - Plastics/ Burns (intern only rotation, luckily there's two of us)
  • August - Pediatric Surgery (yay! so excited!)
  • September - Endoscopy (intern only rotation)
  • October - General Surgery (private hospital)
  • November - B Team ICU (only person in the ICU the whole time, I think)
  • December - Vascular Surgery
  • January - Transplant Surgery
  • February - Cardiovascular Surgery
  • March - B Team ICU (again, only person in the ICU the whole time)
  • April - A Team floor (so, general surgery)
  • May - VA ICU
  • June - VA floor
It's ICU heavy; apparently that's what they do for the residents coming from outside programs. But I'm happy with it. I like ICU and it will really help me get ready for the coming years.

Well, I think that's about it for now.

Hope the weekend is treating you all well, I'm about to go enjoy the 90 degree weather on my patio.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Welcome to the new blog!

Image from
I have officially graduated from medical school and moved to a new state, which means it's time for a new blog!

If you're interested in a little more information about me and what I'm doing, check it out below the jump.

Residency is going to be crazy but I'll do my best to share what I can along the way. Please bear with me if there's huge lapses in posting... they'll be coming (probably at the prodding of my mother).

So, WELCOME to the new blog.

I hope that everyone can find the humor and plethora of emotions that residency is sure to bring out.

Thanks again for those who have followed me through the past few years and for making the move over here.