Sunday, September 6, 2009

The first 3 weeks of med school

Well I survived! J survived and things are going well. But wow life has changed! I think J and I are adjusting because he has a pretty busy schedule too (he didn't get home from a meeting until 11 pm one night) and making the most of things.

I typically have class and anatomy lab from 8-4 every day. I take the bus to school which allows me to nap or study and not stress about traffic. It takes about 20 minutes to get to school. I find myself taking every opportunity I can to review flash cards or review my notes. I'll be standing at the bus stop or waiting in line at the post office reviewing information.

Once I get home from class around 5 I begin studying for about an hour until J gets home. We eat dinner together (I've been cooking and freezing meals during the weekend) and then I get back to studying by 8 or so. I try and go to bed before midnight, but a couple of nights I was up until 1, which isn't always ideal when J gets up at 5 and I get up at 6 the next morning. I got sick after the first week with a slight fever and typical cold symptoms, that are just now going away. This reminded me how important it is to take care of my body. I typically don't study on Friday nights as J and I go out to dinner or watch tv together at home. But it's back to studying all day Saturday and Sunday.

I really enjoy anatomy lab. There are 5 of us to a body and I really like my partners. In the 1st 3 weeks we've dissected the entire back, down to the spinal cord, the shoulder, neck, chest, arm, forearm and hand regions. At the end of the trimester we have to present any abnormal findings about our body and a possible cause of death. So far we haven't found too many abnormalities, except what we assume to be poor circulation, which lead to some decay in her arm muscles. Other groups have found breast implants, colonoscopy bags, stitches from heart surgery and various scars.

On Friday we had our first test. I think it went ok. I don't feel doomed, but I wouldn't say I'm confident that I got an amazing grade. The test was 2 practical part in which we had to identify nerves, arteries, body parts, etc on the bodies, as well as look at xrays. The other part was written with about 80 questions.

Thankfully we don't have class the day before tests, so on Thursday I woke up at 8 am and studied until 12:30 am. I typically set a timer for 60 minutes and study that entire time and then take a 15 minute break.

This is my binder for the 1st 3 weeks filled with notes and powerpoints. Most of the pages are printed double sided too! It's a 2 inch binder and yep it's already full. I'll be buying a new one tomorrow.

I got creative with my studying by the end of the night. In order to remember which nerves innervate which muscles in the hand I drew it out on my hand. I'm a very visual learner and I think it was effective as it helped me not get confused to which nerves run on which side of the arm.

A few people asked me to take pictures in my scrubs :) I was home alone and didn't know how to make the self timer setting work, so this is as good as it gets.

I'm enjoying Labor Day weekend, as I didn't study at all yesterday :) I'll do some studying today, but tomorrow J and I are going to head to the mall, so that will be a nice treat on our day off.

1 comment:

  1. Hi A, I love reading your blog and seeing all your photos from ventures around Philly. Glad to see you and J are adjusting quite well to the move. Take care!