The Differential
Blog Address: http://blogs.medscape.com/thedifferential
February 28, 2012

A Reminder

Our shift had ended an hour ago, and we’d finally dropped the last patient -- a crash victim -- off at the hospital. The cool night air washed across my face as the city sounds mixed with the chatter of the radio, and I settled deeper into the battered passenger seat of the aging ambulance, my feet propped lazily on the dash. The second year of medical school had begun, and weekends on the rig offered a welcome respite from exams and the constant study schedule we’ve all come to know. My partner, Mike, rambled on about something as I absentmindedly nodded and grunted.

The high-pitched tones that indicated the next transmission pulled me from my reverie....

Posted By: Rick Pescatore  

February 27, 2012

Paying the Piper

I sat down yesterday and went through online exit counselling for my student loans. All told, I've got some debt still hanging around from my undergrad days, and a whole mess of medical school debt on my tab. I won't disclose the final figure on Medscape, but I will say that it's ...

Posted By: Alex Folkl  

February 26, 2012

The Language of Medicine

Medicine in many ways is like learning a new language. It's not enough to know what you know, you have to know how to talk about it. Yet it becomes more complicated when you're the ones writing (and reading) the notes in the chart. Suddenly, the language you thought you knew has...

Posted By: Matt Wiepking  

February 25, 2012

Patterns in the ER

Everyone is waiting for their checks at the end of the month; you'll have a slow night. -- Nurse talking about my evening ER shift

The emergency room does seem to be a little more peculiar on the evening of a full moon. On really cold nights, the waiting room will...

Posted By: Carl Streed Jr  

February 25, 2012

Matching is NOT the Finish Line

The light at the end of the tunnel...is here. Does that mean I am no longer in the tunnel?

Last week I received the great news that I matched into emergency medicine at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in San Bernardino, California. It has a very strong program that promi...

Posted By: Joshua Batt  

February 19, 2012

When Medicine Gets Political

The recent Komen Foundation - Planned Parenthood funding controversy alerted me to the fact that not all of my classmates in medical school are necessarily pro-choice. Or even if they are, they do not think that abortions are a women's health issue, but rather a women's autonomy i...

Posted By: Samyukta Mullangi  

February 19, 2012

The Human Spirit's Strength

I named my units of blood: Henry and Frank. - Friend

On a recent visit, I was chatting with my friend about the past few weeks of her chemo and radiation therapy for cervical cancer. Up until now, I had not heard much from her as she has been understandably low on...

Posted By: Carl Streed Jr  

February 19, 2012

The Illusion of Certainty

"Mr. Jones," I said, trying to convey a sense of certainty about the words that were about to come out of  my mouth, "we've reviewed all of your labwork, and that, combined with my initial exam and your EKG, makes it pretty unlikely that you've had a heart attack today."...

Posted By: Alex Folkl  

February 19, 2012

Siamo in attesa di una lampada

A patient with a markedly elevated BMI arrived into the clinic recently to have a flexible cystoscopy performed (looking at the bladder through a small camera). The patient was elderly and did not speak English outside of the phrase, "I don't speak English." Due to the patient's...

Posted By: Matt Wiepking  

February 19, 2012

Perception is Everything

I walked into the exam room. Inside I saw my patient. It was the first time I had ever seen him. But he was a regular at clinic. He had been seeing my attending for years. But for him, the routine was the same. He had to endure a period of humoring a medical student fumbling thr...

Posted By: Jeffrey Wonoprabowo  

 
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Medical school and residency can be a stressful, demanding time. These medical students share their insights and experiences, good and bad, in order to create a community of support and understanding for medical students everywhere.

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