Saturday, 29 January 2011

Cultured Weekend

Some of you will be confused and some of you will be impressed by the fact that today I'm indulging in even more culture.

As if Cirque Du Soleil on Wednesday wasn't enough, today I am going to the Tate. Again. I went just before Xmas too. That makes me properly cultured.

But don't worry... I'll still be indulging in a fishbowl of cocktail later... I haven't changed that much!

This in theory is my last weekend of freedom before revision starts. Although I said that about Xmas. I really need to get some motivation and knuckle down unless I want to be resitting 5th year and to be honest, that does not appeal.

Also I need to rant. The postman came again today and didn't bother knocking, just left one of those "you weren't in to receive your parcel" notes. I was in!!! Grrrr. To make it worse the parcel had the dress that I want to wear tonight.... boo hoo!! :(

Lily xXx

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Totem - Cirque Du Soleil

This is a little unusual for me. Usually I prattle on about life and med school. Today I am going to attempt a kind of review of the Cirque Du Soleil show I saw last night. Or at least review it in a Lily-style.

Last night I went to Totem at the Royal Albert Hall with a friend. Our first issue was finding a pub or somewhere to eat nearby. Seriously. It is like a desert when it comes to drinking spots. It's practically on the Imperial campus... do they not drink? Is this why they're so clever?!

Anyway, we got into the Royal Albert Hall, took our seats up the top and looked down at the giant turtle that looked like the stage. I like turtles, so this was good.

The show started with a man in a sparkly leotard being dangled from the ceiling like a giant human disco ball. This was amazing. In fact when I'm a billionaire I'm going to have a human disco ball in my living room.

I also liked the men dressed as lizards on the trampolines with the bars. And I loved the trapeze artists. I was strangely fascinated and petrified at the same time by everything else. These acrobats must be superhuman. I can't begin to imagine the hard work that goes into conditioning their bodies. It's amazing. I was amazed.

It was the second time I saw Cirque du Soleil and it was even better than the first. I now want to see the other 20 shows they have...

Lily xXx

Monday, 24 January 2011

Chaos In GP-land.

Manic does not describe my morning.

GP-land broke into complete chaos and mayhem today.

When I arrived at 8.50 there was a queue of patients outside. Why wasn't the surgery open? Turns out the receptionist hadn't turned up.

Friday saw the receptionist and myself have a falling out. I was seeing a patient who had miscarried recently. The receptionist stormed in mid consultation and began shouting at the patient. Turns out the patient had wanted to make a complaint about not being seen soon enough and asked another patient for the receptionists name and had a grumble. The receptionist was shouting "If you want to know my name you ask me to my face, don't go talking about me behind my back"

Totally unprofessional. Totally inappropriate.

The patient was pretty upset, the receptionist was asked to leave the room. Afterwards the receptionist was told by the GP she was in the wrong after having a bit of a clash with me over the whole thing. I was mortified by her carry on.

Anyway, back to today. The receptionist wasn't there this morning. I think she was sulking.

After we let in a disgruntled bunch of half frozen patients the GP and I realised we had a problem. The receptionist had the keys to the consulting room. 20 minutes later and we found a spare set. Our problems still weren't over...

Today was "the-big-change day". We were changing computer system. Not good when noo-one has an idea what they're doing. We could barely turn the system on, let alone enter patient info or print a prescription. We reverted to writing all the consultations by hand. Cheating, but we would have been there for months otherwise.

Thankfully we spent a 3 hr lunch break learning how to use the system and by the afternoon we could just about cope.

Tomorrow I have to use the new computer on my own. Eek!!

( On the subject of professionalism there is a research project happening at the moment looking into medical student experiences of professionalism within healthcare. There's a questionnaire you can fill by clicking the link... )

Lily xXx

Sunday, 23 January 2011

My GP Tutor....

... is the best GP in the world. Fact.

This is evidence based medicine. My evidence being that at least 80% of the patients that I see at the GP surgery tell me that he is the best GP in the world. They also bring him so many chocolates that even when all the other staff have taken home a box there's still a box for me to have.

Being at medical school is not just about learning facts from books, it's about learning how to be a good doctor. I guess we do this from watching bad doctors and avoiding what they do, while seeking out good doctors and trying to emulate what makes them a good doctor. For this reason I thought I'd list the things that make my GP tutor, the-best-GP-in-the-world.

1. He's been a GP at 1 practice for over 30 years. Because of this he knows lots of little things about his patients and always makes them feel cared for by asking after relatives and past medical problems.

2. He never makes a patient feel like a timewaster.

3. When a patient cries, he knows what to do. He doesn't just sit there awkwardly like some people. He offers tissues and tells them its OK to cry.

4. He cares for his palliative patients. He'll do home visits after surgery hours so he's not rushed and can sit with the family for half an hour or more to answer their questions and just be there. He also will sometimes just sit there holding a very sick patients hand so the relatives have time to go and make a cup of tea.

5. He is frank and open with patients. "Am I going to die doc?" ... "Probably not today, but there comes a time when all of us have to die".

6. He doesn't panic. Prime example a lady who is 38 weeks pregnant came into the surgery. Her BP was over 160/110. On questioning she hadn't felt her baby move in over 24 hrs. We couldn't find a foetal heartbeat. Mum started to panic. I was quietly panicing. He was calmly reassuring the woman, phoning the hospital and organising child care for her younger child. Thankfully the baby was OK, but I was so impressed with the way he didn't fuss and took control of the situation right down to phoning the patients mother to pick up the younger child from the GP surgery.

I'm sure like any doctor he has his bad days, and I'm sure he makes his mistakes, but I hope that once I'm practising my patient's feel that I'm as good a doctor as he is.

Lily xXx

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Ranking.... Done.




Now I can get on with doing some work/cleaning my hovel of a flat and put FY1 out of my mind until Feb 15th. It's going to be a big day as I'll find out whether or not I need to sell my flat. Scary times.

Also been thinking, Since I won't be a student any more I'll have to start a new blog too... So many changes.

Lily xXx

Ranking Foundation Jobs.

What a chore.

I have 271 jobs to rank. I haven't done that well on my fpas application (well enough to just scrape into a popular foundation school, but no better), I have to rank ALL the jobs. By them telling me this I'm presuming that they're saying "rank all the jobs but realistically you're getting one of the bottom 50".

This doesn't bother me so much. I've got a job in the foundation school of my choice. So what if it has the dreaded geriatric rotation in it? I'll survive. I'm also not that bothered where I go within the foundation school, I'm sure that even if I have to move away I'll make new friends. I moved away to go to uni and it was the best thing I've ever done. My thinking is that FY1 will be more about the opportunities I seize and the attitude with which I tackle things.

This said I'm still stressing about ranking. I ranked the jobs by numbering them, with a pen, on the prospectus. All the paeds jobs first, then everything else in order of location ( - geriatric jobs) and then everything else that has geri's in it last. Fairly simple. Oh no. Now it's come to putting it on the computer its really complicated. I can either type in the massively long code for each job, then search it, and then select the job to rank or I can search by hospital or speciality and pick the jobs from a list to rank. This would be simple if the prospectus told us the hospital, it doesn't it tells us the trust. It would also be nice if the website told us the FY2 linked trust, which is doesn't. Wasting so much time cross referencing things.

The fun is I'll have to do this all over again next year to choose FY2 jobs. Joy.

Lily xXx

Thursday, 13 January 2011


So far in GP-land I've had to face my biggest body-part fear in medicine. There's one thing that is guaranteed to make me squirm. People would be surprised to know that this isn't the long hours that freak me out, nor is it the rectal exams or the babies having a pee mid 6-week check...'s belly buttons.

Especially outies.

How do outies even happen? Innies are pretty gross too though. They're all deep and grotty looking. I've even seen people with seemingly flat belly buttons. Usually on well toned young men. They freak me out too, the flat belly buttons that is, not the young men. I'm rather fond of those.

I have to go and psych myself up for another day of abdo exams and getting close to belly-buttons. *shudders*

Lily xXx

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Biscuit-Chicken-Egg Theory

At new year I promised to write this theory.

It's my special theory on nationality. Unfortunately for me as it's quite abstract (...yes that means crazy), everyone is always either confused or wetting themselves laughing half way through my explanation.

To set the scene. People always talk about what nationality I am. I'm not British, even though I was born in London I'm not automatically entitled to British nationality. I would have to apply for it. My parents have both lived in the UK for some time but are EU nationals from other countries. For arguments sake lets say Germany and Spain (it's not actually these countries). This means that I'm allowed passports from both of these countries. I get upset because when I say I'm either Spanish or German people argue with me and say that I'm not really. But I'm not British either. So what am I?

Anyway the theory...

If you put a chicken in the oven and it laid an egg, when the egg hatched would it be another little chicken or would it be a biscuit?

It would be a chicken.

And there in lies the answer. You are what your parents were. Even though the oven normally would be the birth place of biscuits if a chicken gave birth there, it would still be a chicken.

This makes me a chicken and all of you lot biscuits.

More philosophy of Lily at some other point.

Lily xXx

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Variety is the Spice of Life

I've just finished the end of my second day of my GP placement. I had an early start, a late finish but a very nice gap in which I got to go home in the afternoon.

I'm enjoying GP a lot more that I thought I would. In fact, to be perfectly honest, I was dreading it a bit. It's such a relief after seeing lots of inpatients with similar problems to see a big variety of patients of all different ages, races and backgrounds with a huge mixture of different problems. It's also lovely to see the relationship the GP has with many of his patients. He repeatedly pointed out patients older than I am that he has known since birth. One patient even bought him a bottle of wine to say thanks for his treatment, it was lovely to see.

Although I'm enjoying it a lot I still don't think it's the career for me. I don't like the fact that tests aren't right at your fingertips and I don't like the rude demanding patients who insist on sick notes or antibiotics.

I was also petrified by the number of people who came in with flu. I haven't had time to get my flu jab yet so I tried to hold my breath every time one of them came in. Needless to say holding your breath for 8-9 minutes is a little difficult so I may have breathed in some flu germs... nooooooo!!

Lily xXx

P.S I've discovered a new thingy called "graze" online, where you can order boxes of yummy and relatively healthy treats which fit through your letter box. For lazy people like me this is ideal. It's like the take-away of the snack world. I have a code for a free box if anyone wants to try...
QGXK196 ... input it on if you fancy trying it.96

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

New Year, New Placement.

Today was another start to a new placement. It sometimes feels as if I'm on a merry-go-round of placements. On the plus side, all this moving between placements, hospitals, departments and specialities means that I'm getting less and less bothered with change.

I've always been a bit of a change-hating control freak. Because of this my first day of new placement is usually filled with dread. Today my only dread was about finding the GP surgery. I must finally be used to all this moving around.

My first day was pretty chilled out. I didn't have to arrive until 10. When I got there I was introduced to the very friendly GP and automatically given a cup of tea by the even friendlier receptionist. I think I could get to like this place.

The morning was spent sitting in on a clinic. It was nice to see lots of young people after my time in geriatrics. I got to spend time with baby checks, vaccinations, lots of people with colds and sinusitis and some more long standing problems.

After clinic I went on a home visit with the GP to see a lady with an enormous leg ulcer. It didn't smell too bad, like many ulcers I've seen, but it was HUGE. It must have taken up 1/3rd of the surface area of her calf. She's had it for a very long time and is now running out of treatment options. Although she was unwilling last year, she's now going to try maggots. I've heard about maggots being used to eat the dead flesh out of ulcers to help healing but have never seen it. I'm pretty excited. I'm going to ask the district nurse if I can tag along to see what happens. I really hope it works as the lady was so lovely (not that I'd wish a poorly healing leg ulcer on someone who was horrid).

I got to go home early today which was nice. Unfortunately I had 2 sad phone calls in the afternoon with varying amounts of bad news, one of which I'll blog about once I've had a chance to cool down. Dreading the amount of housework I have to do and I have to start revision... eep!!

Lily xXx