Here are some questions that are still on my mind as I approach the tail end of my chief year. I’m thinking about the best ways to offer constructive feedback.

  • What is the best way to approach a struggling learner?
  • What is the best way to give guidance and feedback without being perceived as a tyrant or overbearing?
  • How can I maximize the potential of my team members and the trainees ...

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I was walking home from classes last week when I ran into a few friends from my medical school class sitting outside at a local bar. I was done for the evening, so I pulled up a chair, ordered a beer, and joined the conversation. They were talking about the wards. I’ve been on a year off since we’d all been third-year medical students together, so it was fun to ...

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It was 5:30 a.m., and I could barely contain my excitement. I was almost done with my clinical rotations. I had worked tirelessly to improve my medical knowledge and spent hours mastering my clinical skills. Now, as I was nearing the end of my third year of medical school, I felt more than ready for what lay ahead. I walked into my patient’s room. As she slept, I examined the lines and ...

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“OK, it is time to move on,” my professor claps his hands together and yells above the chatter.  We all look up from our Netter’s anatomy books and our cadavers.  The smell of formaldehyde burns my nose as the fluorescent lights flicker above. “We have explored the chest cavity and the abdominal cavity.  It is now time to move onto the extremities, starting with the arms.  I want you to unwrap ...

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As I turn off my laptop after taking notes for two consecutive hours on microcytic anemia and pack my pens and papers, millions of thoughts come to my mind. Only yesterday, we finished our microbiology exam. Bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi mnemonics are still in my mind, many of which I forgot what they refer to. The microbiology exam finished, and another challenge is on the way. Everyone faces challenges and bumps ...

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At the risk of vilification by my peers, I’m going to say something extremely unpopular. We physicians have it pretty good financially. Our salaries are generous, and we have a much higher standard of living than most others in America. When I read online physician complaints about student loan debt, I cringe a bit. Because of all the people in debt, we are some of the ...

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I pulled on my white coat and straightened my tie before walking into the patient room with my supervising physician, Dr. H. Our patient was a teenage boy with autism, and Dr. H let me take the lead. Towards the end of the visit I asked, as I always do, “Do you have any questions for me?” He had not made eye contact with me throughout the visit, which can ...

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I’ll be honest, when I first matriculated into medical school, I didn’t even know what a USMLE Step exam or clinical clerkship was. In fact, the first time I ever heard of them was from another applicant on the interview trail. I have always been a take-it-one-step-at-a-time type of person, but eventually, I would have to succumb to the pressure and ask upperclassmen about the exam. And what did they ...

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Today, I am a 40-year old with type 2 diabetes. I have been on glyburide since I was diagnosed four years ago and am otherwise healthy, although my blood pressure today is 140/96. I don’t check my glucose levels at home because I don’t have a monitor. Typically, I avoid sweets, but my diet is high in natural sugars, carbohydrates and starches. The only exercise I get is walking around ...

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I have fond memories of my first class in the anatomy laboratory. It was the Monday of my first week at medical school. I’d spent the last night pouring over my newly purchased anatomy textbooks. I wondered how I would ever appreciate the countless anatomical details of the human body. But as I stood around the benches with a body donor, everything changed. Suddenly all the organs, vessels and tissues ...

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