100th post...

100 posts...I'll dedicate this post to the fact that I've pretty much finished my pre-clinical medical education. Thanks for reading.

Looking back on the past 15,454 hours (or 21 months, 4 days...not that I'm counting) of my life, I'm not all that impressed by what I've seen. I've done a lot of sitting infront of books, I've run through 70+ highlighters, I've done a lot of memorizing but not a lot of learning. Every time that I think that I've mastered a subject, I go back and the foundation has fallen out from it. I try to look at the forest, but all I see are the individual pine needles. At this point, my exams test for ability to regurgitate random minutiae from Robbins, not for understanding of the material. Understanding material and being able to regurgitate sentences from Robbins on demand are very different. For one, I don't see the utility of being able to recite the translocations responsible for 15 different hematologic malignancies, or the cell of origin of one of the 25 difference neoplasms of the ovaries in the education of someone who will be a family physician, psychiatrist or emergency physician.

There has been a lot of wasted effort in my education, on both my behalf as well on the behalf of the AAMC/LCME who have an asininely archaic idea of what medical education should be. After June 23rd about 70% of what I've been forced to learn over the past 2 years will be vaporized from my short term memory. All those little interconnected neurons in my holding medical knowledge in my hippocampus will simply rearrange some microtubules and the hours I spent slaving over the pages of Robbins will spill out of my the distance reaches of my consciousness. Two years of my life be reduced nothing more than a few distant memories of sitting my ass in front of that same crappy carrel in the dingy basement of the library with the humming of the furnace and the fluorescent lights in my ears.

You would think that I would be sad that I'm about to reduce the intimate memories of approximately 1/12th of my life down to one simple experience that I like to refer to as "The Suck." But I'm not. You see, the past 21 months have been little more than a requisite right of passage into what I've been waiting to experience: LEARNING MEDICINE! Isn't that what I've paid for thus far? Didn't I go to medical school and not "memgurgitate lots of information that you probably will never see in the course of your career for the fun of it" school?

The ironic thing is that I'll probably look back on all of this in the middle of one of my over-night call shifts on surgery or OB and long for the days where I could sleep for 8 solid hours and control my own schedule instead of being abused on the floors. But for now, I'm hopeful that seeing and experiencing the management of patients and their various disease will re-ignite my failing passion for medicine.

1 comment:

The Lone Coyote said...

You'll be amazed at how many of those little details will come back to you at random times. On my Peds Heme Onc rotation they were very impressed at my ability to recall random translocations. They would suddenly appear in my brain after not being thought at all about for 2+ years.