Friday, February 10, 2012

Lack of Sleep.

5 weeks in! 2 more weeks to go. This has got to me the toughest week in terms of waking up. Every morning I am waking up at 6:30am to get ready, but it doesn't help that there isn't much to motivate me to get up.  I think the only thing that is making me wake up on time is the fact that I have to drive other people to the hospital so they kinda rely on me. I also think that being 5 weeks in, there isn't much else to see. Most of the patients we see have acute illnesses as most of the special illnesses get referred to a bigger hospital. 

I was on-call on Wednesday and the best bit is that the doctors on the ward can tell when I am on-call as I'm never on the ward when I am on-call. I try to go to clinics to try and make the time go by faster. As usual...Wednesday - I escaped the ward. I went to the Children's Orthopaedic Clinic for the entire morning. It was a lot more interesting than I expected it to be. I saw a lot of different cases. I was even able to sympathize with some of the patients. Met a girl who is hypermobile, which was affecting her participation in sports.  The consultant was doing a physical examination on the range of movement of her joints and on doing internal rotation of the hip, the consultant asked me if it was normal. I knew my leg could turn that far so I said: "normal". I have never seen such a confused face. "That is NOT normal. LOOK how far it goes!" Feeling a bit dumb/embarrassed I covered my back side by saying: "Oh sorry didn't notice how far it went *blushes*"

Once the patient left, the consultant questioned why I thought the range of movement was normal as it was apparently fairly abnormal. Then I proceeded to tell him that I am hypermobile as well. Then I found out he isn't very good with hypermobility.  The consultant looked quite uncomfortable and didn't want to see me showing my "flexibility". I was quite surprised about his reaction, but thinking about is fairly gross. Fingers shouldn't bend so far back and such.  Haha. Hypermobility is a great party trick by the way. Just thought I would throw that out there.

Anyways clinic took quite long, but we had a lot of patients. What I enjoyed the most about the clinic is that we did not see two of the same case. Every single patient had a different problem and it really kept me awake and interested. For the first time at a clinic, I did not find myself bored. I was constantly engaged and I found each case interesting.  Probably could be one of the best clinics that I have ever been to. Long, but interesting.

At some point the clinic had to end and I had to return to the ward. On the way back, I stopped for a lunch break.  When I returned to the ward I was told there was another clinic happening in 30 minutes. Obviously I pounced on that opportunity and I disappeared from the ward for another 4 hours. By the time I got back to the ward, I only had 4 more hours left of my on-call to do. Luckily when I got back, the ward started to get busy and I got to clerk in a few patients. Most of them were diarrhoea and vomiting problems, so it wasn't too exciting. It was better than sitting around doing nothing.  But because the ward started to get busy, I didn't get to leave til 9:30pm. I had quite a bit of work to do when I got home and didn't get to sleep early. Worst part, I had to get up at 6:30am the next morning again. Thursday was brutal. For the entire day I was falling asleep whenever I sat down.  We also had lunchtime teaching from the registrar and I accidentally fell asleep. I felt really bad as I didn't mean to fall asleep as it wasn't boring. I was just so tired I couldn't keep my eyes open. Now I think the registrar hates me. She wouldn't talk to me afterwards and it was kinda awkward on the ward. Hopefully she'll forget about it after the weekend. And hopefully I can catch up on my sleep.


  1. Hey,
    Im confused how come you finished at 9.30pm. Does the medical school not give you a set time that you have to finish from placement? Love the blog by the way!

    1. Hey,
      No we don't have a set time that we have to finish by. I know people who do overnight shifts. It's all down to our own preference. The point of on-calls is to follow the schedule of the on-call registrar/SHO. The typical schedule for them is 9am-9pm ish. Defeats the purpose of experiencing a long day on-call if you leave early. It's not too's just that you're pretty tired the next day.

  2. you've mentioned that there isn't much to motivate you to get up in the morning. I know the feeling especially when it's cold and dark. I always find that turning on the radio first thing can help. It can help you feel more alive and give you a bit of a boost!