Sunday, November 20, 2011

Practice Makes Perfect.

I was signed off from placement on Monday so I haven't been doing anything particularly interesting other than revising for exams. Met up with a friend on Thursday to do some physical examination practice on patients at the hospital. As you may recall in my first attachment back in the summer (doesn't seem that long ago...time flies) I was drilling Cardio an Respiratory Examinations. Well exams are in 2.5 weeks so I got to get drilling on the rest of the examinations.

So we went and practised Abdominal, Shoulder, and Knee exams. Got that down pretty quickly. Never really had trouble with those examinations to be honest. Then we practised Cranial Nerves, peripheral neuro, and hand examinations. We did these with each other as these exams have quite a lot of steps. Before practising, I was hopeless at Cranial Nerve exams. I was not slick at all and obviously needed some serious practice. After a few attempts, I have finally gotten it down and was starting to get slicker at it. Did the same with the other examinations and I could definitely see an improvement. I was starting to feel much more confident with my examination skills and a bit more confident for my OSCE exam. Have arranged another physical examination practice session for Monday so hopefully I'll continue to improve and get better at these things.

Today I finally reached the last system to revise (Gastrointestinal). It surely doesn't feel like the last unit as my binder is still full of notes and it just doesn't seem real that exams are so soon. It's really weird. Most of my friends and I agree that exams don't seem near and the panic still hasn't set in. Generally been feeling quite unmotivated so I constantly have to remind myself how close exams are which results in mini panic attacks/a kick up the ass. I guess it kind of works as I've been revising furiously for these last few days and really pushing to get ahead of my revision schedule to give myself an extra half week of revision for anything I'm unsure of. At the moment I have scheduled in 1 extra week prior to exams for random revision/going over sample questions. Hopefully if I work hard enough I can make it 1.5 weeks of extra revision time to actually properly learn Microbiology. I swear Microbiology is my new nemesis. It used to be histology, but because we don't do that as much anymore...Microbiology has quickly taken Histology's crown of being my nemesis. There are so many things to remember! And all the stains for the different bacteria. Mental.

Pharmacology comes close behind. Drug treatments for Cardiovascular disease and respiratory are fairly straight forward. The minute you get to Dermatology...oh wow. You start feeling like a walking BNF (British National Formulary - it is a book of drugs)...but more like a BNF written with fading ink. Put some new drugs into my brain...the old drugs fall out. Dermatology...endless amount of drugs. So many names as well! Half of them I can't really spell! I can picture myself writing drug names in my exam and writing the first few-ish letters and then squiggling the rest and making sure it looks like the drug I'm thinking of. Thank goodness spelling doesn't count in our exams! As long as the word is recognizable they will take it.

My Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine is also finally getting beat up. It had been in mint condition for 2 years and FINALLY it is getting used...and I am seriously using it to death. Also random note - think I might be getting tennis elbow as my desk isn't great to write on as it is fairly deep. That means my elbow is constantly resting on the hard surface and sometimes I can feel my hand go tingly and numb. Also my elbow is sore from resting on the hard surface. The things you sacrifice for exams. Sacrifice sleep, good food (yay for quick microwave food), social life, going out, sanity, blah blah blah, and now sacrificing joints! Prospective future for my body. YES!

I hate revision. I miss lounging around and being lazy.

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