Wednesday, 27 October 2010

A Week In The Life of a Final Year Medical Student - Wednesday

8.00am - Get up. I like these lie-ins. Apparently I should make the most of them as its doubtful that I'll get them when I'm on a surgery rotation.

8.45am - Meet the others and trek in to the hospital in the rain. Start complaining about the weather/life.

9.00am - Try to start ward round but we're short almost the whole team.

9.10am - Start post-take ward round. Proud to say I remembered how to use the photocopier for patient lists. At least if I fail I can be a secretary.

10.45 - About 9 patients through the ward round, only another 6 or so to go. Get tasked with begging another consultant to add a patient to their gastroscopy list. Get grilled as the patient probably doesn't need an "urgent" gastroscopy medically, but he's been suffering symptoms some time. There's some debate within the team as to whether or not he's a malingerer. I feel bad judging patients, but it's all too easy to do.

11.30am First ward round done. Everyone splits up to tackle the rest of the patients.

11.35am Have a difficult moment when a codeine addicted patient asks for opiate based painkillers. Another "judging" moment. Is he drug seeking or is he in pain?! Leave this one to someone more senior to decide.

12.20pm Get asked to do a difficult cannula... check my watch and breathe a sign of relief as I realise I won't have time before teaching. Apologise and feel kind of guilty.

12.30pm Turn up for teaching.

12.45pm Get told teaching is cancelled.

12.50pm Have some nice salmon pasta in the restaurant. Food is so cheap outside of the London hospitals. Spend some time chatting to students I haven't met before. Suggest starting up a study group. I really need something to help me learn.

1.30pm Try bleeping fy1's... no response.

1.45pm Finally get hold of fy1's. Ask what they want us to do this afternoon and get told to do what we want as there aren't many jobs except chest drains. Each of the fy1's was having their first go at a drain today so we decided that hovering around them would probably make them much more nervous.

2.00pm Got home early again. Bit bored of this. Would like to do some stuff... I have major amounts of sign ups to do.

2.30pm After faffing about for half an hour get started on my Elective Poster.

4.30pm Realise I'm not at all artistic and my poster is going to look a mess. Sad times.

5.00pm Teaching from the junior doctors. It's all quite practical stuff on examination. To be honest I feel it's a bit basic and stuff I already know, but it can't hurt to have it drilled in a little more.

7.00pm Decide what to have to dinner. Also promise myself to read a couple of pages of the Oxford handbook tonight. I really need to get some plan for actually doing work. Must remember to watch the apprentice. (I'm having the other half of the packet of tortellini I opened the other night if anyone's curious!?)

Lily xXx


DoctorFaye said...

Hey, I just thought I'd comment and say I'm really enjoying these "week in the life" posts, very insightful! Hope you get the foundation place you want :)
Faye xxx

Painpoppy said...

I'm enjoying them too and just wanted to comment on your comment about how easy it is to judge patients and how it makes you feel bad.
You are right to feel uneasy. I work in pain management and find that patients are frequently labelled as malingerers or drug seeking by people who don't understand the complexity of chronic pain.
Even if you disbelieve the patient, it is counterproductive to deny pain relief. An acute hospital admission is not an appropriate time to "cure" a presumed addiction.

Thanks again for sharing your experience :)