Wednesday, 30 September 2009

A Valuable Lesson

Tomorrow is my last day of anaesthetics. That may not even be my last day of anaesthetics just in medical school, if I don't choose to persue it any further it could be my last day of anaesthetics ever.

Practically I've learnt a lot. Putting in a cannula isn't that scary, in fact most of the time as long as there's a visable vein and you're not shy about it, it goes in eventually. LMA's are even less scary, easy as long as you're not too shy or gentle about it.

The most valuable lesson I've learn in anaesthetics so far hasn't been any of these things. Anaesthetics has taught me to empathise with patients a lot more. Whenever doing anything surgical so far I may have had a chance to smile at the patient on the ward or have a chat weeks later in outpatients, but basically I've only had to deal with them unconcious. I've truely realised how scary people find operations and how a few kind words go a long way. The anaesthetists I'd most like to have out of the ones I've been placed with have all been the one's who've held the patient's hand whilst injecting them with proprofol if they wanted or distracted the patients with ideas for lovely dreams.

Lily xXx

Monday, 28 September 2009

Silly Socks

Socks are really hard to knit or I'm really easy to confuse.

I'm trying to knit a really simple pair of socks, they're ribbed so I don't need to put a heel in as the ribbing will make them fit the foot... however I am trying to knit them on 4 needles!!

The annoying thing is not the number of needles, but the fact that whenever I lose concentration I end up somehow just knitting on 3 and having to start again. Very frustrating, but it will feel so good once I have it done.

Less than 1 week of anaesthetics left, after today I only have 3 more cannulas to get signed off before I've hit my target of 10 successful cannulas. Or is it cannulae?

Somehow I seem to be exhausted already after only 1 day of this week... I think it's going to be a long one.

Lily xXx

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Traumatic Tuesday

Ok... I realise it's Wednesday, but last night I was having a mini nervous break down so didn't feel like posting.

For some reason, probably girly hormones and exhaustion, I was really down. I was upset that the boyf wasn't around, feeling disenchanted with medicine and hating having to get up early. In fact by about 6pm I had decided I was quitting and becoming a wedding planner. I am very organised after all.

Anyway the day started early. I woke up at 5am. That is after being kept awake until after 2 by my neighbors. Great. Clearly a bad start to anyone's day.

I had a morning in theatre with the anaesthetist. My first patient had dementia, the anaesthetist decided he was very lucid and let me cannulate him. I introduced myself, chatted for a couple of minutes and then tried to put in the cannula. I warned him about a scratch and just as I got the tip in he screamed and hit me. Fabulous. I realise it wasn't his fault and when you're not entirely sure what's happening around you things can be very scary, but I would have rather he hit the anaesthetist.

After that the morning was okay, but pretty dull. The anaesthetist didn't really want to teach me anything, so it made it all pretty boring. I then had an afternoon of lectures and trotted off home.

When I got home I talked to the boyf on the phone and just having a conversation with someone I love so much without being able to have a hug made me pretty blue, so I spent the rest of the night filled with self pity.

Today I've woken up much more cheerful. It's amazing what a good night's sleep can do. I also saw Gok Wan today... in a queue for coffee!

It's back to placement tomorrow, with a morning in theatre and an afternoon clinic. Suffering my usual fear that the anaesthetist will be mean and horrible, but fingers crossed it will all be good!

Lily xXx

Monday, 21 September 2009

Needles and Tubes

It's only week 2 and already I'm dreaming about cannulas and various forms of airway maintenance.

In a couple of hours in theatre I managed to steam on with my checklist of stuff to do. I need 10 cannulas and 10 LMAs, I've done 3 successful cannulas (unfortunated my success rate is down to 75% now), and 5 successful LMAs. I'll be breathing a big sigh of relief once I've got enough to get signed off. It's only week 2 and I'm already stressing about sign-ups. I'm such a worry-wart.

I'm in a bit of a funny mood this week. Mainly due to huge arguement between the boy and I. It was very much both our faults.... his for being grumpy and short tempered and mine for being steaming drunk and therefore horrible. Anyway before the arguement we've had some tears over the fact he hates commuting from my crappy flat, in a crap part of London, where I get mugged on the way home (too regularly) and we wake up to blood and faeces in the stairwell. The 24hr loud music from downstairs doesn't help either. So the arguement was a big vent of frustrations, but we've decided it'll be best if he stays at his Nan's near work during the week and then back at the flat on weekends. We'll be able to save more for a deposit on a nicer house (he'll have a lot less petrol to pay) and we won't both be grumpy and tired in the evenings.

Even though I'm happy with this new set up because it means less arguements as the flat is so small we spend all our time walking on each others toes, I can't help feeling a bit abandonned. I know if I'm upset or have a bad day he'll do the hour's drive to come and keep me company but otherwise it's just the ferrets and I... and all the scary people shouting outside. It wouldn't be so bad if I lived in a nice area, but since the "bad people" have moved in downstairs it's really horrid here.

Lily xXx

Friday, 18 September 2009

The First Week

My first week of 4th year is over. It's been busier and more tiring than I could have imagined and loads of it was just induction!

On Thursday we ended up with an impromptu early start to our practical anaesthetics exposure as a day of lectures was cancelled. Each of us was put with a different anaesthetist in a different theatre, scary stuff considering we usually go in pairs.

Over the next 2 weeks of anaesthetics we're all expected to do 10 cannulas and 10 laryngeal mask airways. Pretty daunting since we do very little invasive things in 3rd year.

I managed to impress myself by keeping my 100% cannulation success rate (it doesn't sound as impressive when I then tell people that I've only done 2 in my life). I also managed to put in an LMA right first time which was surprisingly simple and really satisfying. Spending time with the anaesthetists I realised that it's definitely a career I'd consider for the future.

On Thursday I even got free lunch and a pen with the grand round. It wasn't soggy hospital sandwiches either, it was lovely warm lasagne with lots of veg too. Num num num.

Lily xXx

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Induction Day

I made it into uni on time! Hurrah... always a good start when it's an induction.

Started the day off with free tea, coffee and pastries. Num num num. They spent a surprisingly short amount of time boring us all with boring stuff we've heard before and got straight into the interesting stuff. Timetables. Timetables fascinate me. I'm obsessed by knowing where I'll be at any particular time in the next few months. In fact as soon as I get a timetable I breathe a sigh of relief. These timetables are so complicated they have loads of colours though, which is a bit intimidating, but I think I've got to grips with the 3 different timetables I've been given!

I start of with 3 week of anaesthetics. In this I'm going to get lots of chances to cannulate and stuff like that, which will no doubt be really useful although I must admit I get so nervous doing practical skills at first. The hospital I'm placed with manages to give us 1 on 1 experience in theatre with anaethetists which means even more time to practice skills.

After that I have 3 weeks of A&E and then 6 weeks of rheumatology and orthopaedics. Although I have these timetables I'm guessing I'll know a lot more what to expect when I get to talk to those who are doing it before me.

Madsadgirl asked how my ferrets are. Great but naughty is the answer. Hugo the little one is getting really big now, but also really mischevious. It was his 2 month birthday yesterday. He's in the nippy stage but is really cute. Luckily him and Archie get on really well... Hugo's favourite treat is nibbling on his earwax. Yummy! On Saturday I'm hoping to take them to a ferret show but I need an extra pair of hands.

Lily xXx

Monday, 14 September 2009

First Day of Year 4

I survived the first day! ...Just

It always frustrates me that I have to get up early for the first day of anything only to have my time wasted with the same talks on plagerism/exams/general conduct. Thankfully that's done for now, although I do have an induction at my placement tomorrow which should be just as thrilling.

The more interesting part of the day was my first lecture/seminar. This was about advanced trauma life support. Interesting stuff. I'm really glad they took the chance to go over this all the first day... would have looked pretty stupid starting an emergency medicine placement and not knowing any of it.

Tomorrow I have to get a bus through loads of roadworks and I'm really worried that no matter how early I leave I'll be late. This stressing out isn't helped by the fact the boyf is staying at his mum's tonight and maybe all week, so I have noone to talk sense into me.

Lily xXx

Monday, 7 September 2009

T - 7 days...

I think that's what I'd say if I was a spy or secret agent counting down until next morning. Although, not being a huge fan of James Bond, I may have got that totally wrong. Bascially 7 days until term starts.

My 5th year at uni and my 4th year of medical school. The last 4 years have gone so quickly that it's a little scary that I only have 2 years left. In a weird way although the time has gone quickly the start of med school seems more like 10 years ago in my mind, and my intercalated BSc just seems like a distant nightmare.

Even though my summer holiday hasn't been as long as it would usually be, I'm suffering the boredom that long holidays bring. At least in previous years I had loads of friends who were on uni holidays, now it's only the medicine lot who have the whole summer and everyone scatters all over the world as soon as the holidays start.

I've got nothing I aimed to do this summer done. I haven't even got to the bottom of the wash basket. On the plus side I feel nice and refreshed which is the main thing.

I'm going to use this week to sort myself out for uni. I've already bought a few bits and bobs. An academic diary. A few new cardis, a pair of trousers (which I need to take up), and some cute pixie boots which will probably be too uncomfortable to wear to uni more than once, but at least on that day my feet will look nice.

I'm thinking of getting a hair cut this week. My hair is pretty unruley so I always get worried about haircuts. If they cut it too short it just goes crazy, and I really struggle to maintain any style, hence the keeping it long and boho. Unfortunately on placement I can't just wear my hair down all the time, so I need to get something done so I can wear it up. At the moment it's so thick and heavy that it hurts to have it up in a bun. Fingers crossed the hairdressers won't do anything too awful with it!

Lily xXx

Saturday, 5 September 2009

London Tourist

Although I've lived in London on and off for a large part of my life, having this staycation has allowed me to see it as a tourist for once. Admittedly apart from eating out I've been pretty lax about doing touristy things but I've really enjoyed myself.

On Monday the boyf and I went to the Tate Modern and spent our evening eating a meze at the Real Greek. Tuesday we took the car out and discovered Tunbridge Wells. Wednesday we had an amazing day at Leeds Castle which is confusingly in Kent. It's beautiful with loads of gorgeous gardens. It's just a shame the weather wasn't better for a picnic. There is also a really confusing maze there that we tackled. They also do Segway tours of the place, which is a must for next time. Thursday we did a London Duck Tour. You go in a WWII car/boat on both the land and water!!! Afterwards I ate my bodyweight in dim sum. Yum yum yum. Yesterday we took it easy and decided to take the two ferrets for a walk in the countryside. For a change I got lots of smiles more than weird looks and noone asked me what kind of dog/money/rat/hamster they were!

Today I'm off for lunch at The Narrow, which is one of the Gordon Ramsay pubs. The nicest thing about it is that it's set right on the river, so on a nice day the view is pretty good. The food isn't bad either!

I'm already getting excited about starting term again in a week. We're starting to get lots of emails telling us bits and bobs that are planned for the near future from uni. Unfortunately no hint at a timetable yet so I have no idea how demanding or not this rotation is going to be.

Lily xXx