"Thank you." Looking back on my step 1 study period, I owe my sanity to three things. Numbers 1 and 2 include my best friend and Coffee Toffee ice cream, both of whom prevented me from falling apart at the seams on multiple occasions. Number 3 is a memory from volunteering earlier in the year, and it still stands out as the sole motivating force behind me ever finding my copy ...

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One of the most distinctive aspects of a medical career is the vulnerability we see in essential strangers almost immediately upon introduction. Even without a medical degree, the third-year medical student will find out intimate details of one’s life while taking a history. Patients will reveal their fears of a disease, embarrassing side effects of a new drug, a habit they are ashamed of. Halfway into third year, I have learned the ...

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shutterstock_125513645 I came across an article featured on NPR and it immediately grabbed my attention.  Traditionally medical student education is accomplished in a four-year program in medical schools nationwide but University of California, Davis is now offering their medical training as a three-year obligation.  A three-year medical school as opposed to a four-year program is intriguing, thought provoking and possibly controversial. ...

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shutterstock_167355368 If you had asked me 15 years ago what I wanted to be when I "grow up," a doctor was definitely not a thought in my mind. I wasn’t bred at a young age to become a physician by the ancestors that walked before me, nor did I desire to go through that much schooling before I could enter the real ...

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July-effect July 1st is a special day at hospitals.  What does that mean?  It depends, depending if you're a medical student, resident, or attending. James Chang is a radiologist and author of Oh Doctor, The Places You Will Go… He blogs at Poor MD and can be reached on Facebook.

shutterstock_211066060 During my third year of medical school, I would often tell my parents about my days on the clinical wards. As physicians, they were excited that I was following in their footsteps and eager to engage me in conversation about my education as doctor-in-training. “So,” they would ask, “did you draw the blood for the labs?” “No, I don’t think I’m allowed to ...

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shutterstock_140576308 Years ago as a first-year medical student, I wrote a piece titled “Be an Innovator in Medical School.” The content was meant to be a starter guide for medical students interested in creating change at their institution or community. Now, at the tail end of medical school, I reflect on lessons I have learned along the way. 1. Do what moves ...

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shutterstock_119970649 Ask any premed student what they fear most and the answer will always be the MCAT, or Medical College Admission Test. After 25 years, the MCAT is being revised, becoming longer (by three hours) and covering a broader range of topics than simply chemistry, physics, and biology. One-quarter of the new test covers "psychology, sociology and the biological foundations of behavior." ...

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A new doctor, fresh out of a top residency and fellowship, wants all the right things at the wrong time. She wants to be busy, with lots of patients, operating every day. In fact, it is better not be busy, and instead to think long and hard about each patient, listening, pausing, recommending non-operative treatments and being patient. Doctors learn the most from the patients they take the time to truly ...

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shutterstock_150587642 Medical schools traditionally admit pre-med students who are science nerds, and later wonder why their graduates aren't well-attuned to their patients' emotions. The Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City hopes to correct that. It now operates a program, called "Hu-Med," that admits humanities majors. They're selected after their sophomore college year, and don't even need to take ...

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