Monday, October 23, 2006

Anatomy, PBL, Anatomy Office Hours, and SINNAPS Panel

Today was a really long day, but it was a good day too. We're still doing the chest, but our anatomy lab is now focusing more on the lungs instead of the heart. Somehow, we wound up with no residents or fellows there to teach us this morning. So Dr. Drake and his assistant showed us the cadavers, and we also had a radiology station like normal. The groups were bigger, but we also had more time at each station, which I think the class generally preferred. It seems like we never have as much time at each station as we'd like to have. We're still trying to get anatomy lab extended until 10AM instead of 9:50, which means that we would start PBL at 10:15 instead of 10AM. That way, we'd also have that last few minutes we need to finish changing and get back to the LRI on time. There are only two sinks in the locker rooms for 16 guys and 16 girls, so by the time everyone washes up and changes clothes, we usually wind up getting to PBL a few minutes late every Monday.

Our PBL case this week centers around a woman who is obese, a heavy smoker, and who was taking a cross-country drive. We're pretty sure we already know what is wrong with her. But since our main focus this year is on normal physiology and anatomy, most of our learning objectives are about the normal function of the lungs, the pulmonary circulation, and the coronary circulation. I am going to be talking about how the body prevents the blood from clotting, very briefly!

Since I have clinic tomorrow, I went to anatomy office hours today after going to the gym. Again, I went at 4:00 with just one other student, and we basically had a private review session. It was fantastic. I still don't think that I know a ton of anatomy, but it definitely is getting easier. I'm actually starting to remember some of the structures. I try to read three or four pages out of the textbook every day, and this week I will finally finish the entire megachapter about the chest. Anatomy is not a subject that you can just breeze through. It takes me about half an hour to read two pages on average, including time to study the illustrations.

Afterward, a couple of my classmates and I practiced taking each other's blood pressures and pulses. In the evening, there was a dinner held by SINNAPS. I don't think I've told you about SINNAPS yet. It's the interest group for people who want to go into any of the brain sciences (neurology, neurosciences, neurosurgery, psychiatry). There was a panel of physicians from different specialties in neuro and psych, and they talked to us about their careers and what they thought about the futures of their specialties. One of the things that I thought was neat about the panel members is how several of them managed to combine neurosciences with so many other specialties. For example, there were two people who did neurological radiology, one who did neurological pathology, and one who did pediatric neurosurgery. One other thing I learned tonight is that I definitely have a long road ahead of me if I decide to go into any of these superspecialties. The pediatric neurosurgery one in particular is way intense.

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