Looking at the World

Since having a medical education, it has made me look at people in ways that I never used to look at them. I’m more observant of people around me.

In medical school, the crucial thing we were taught, was to use our eyes. In our clinical examination classes, we were taught that a general order of examination of the patient was: observation, palpation, percussion, auscultation. Note how observation comes first and foremost before you touch them, and before you use your stethoscope.

And so we’re told that you can glimpse a lot of information about your patient just from watching them. A person who limps into your practice may indicate something like pain from the knee or hip (maybe from osteoarthritis), and an infant who is brought in in the mother’s arms with reduced responsiveness and alertness is probably quite sick.

When you’re observing people all the time, it only becomes natural that you apply it in public. In general, the major thing I glean from seeing people are whether they are well or sick. Then little other subtle things I may observe – things like gait, scars present (may indicate things like past knee replacements), and just other things in general like if they’re pale, have rashes or so.

In turn, I guess being able to apply it in public means that I’m constantly using the skill of observation, and hopefully it will aid in my further career development.

Changes In Place

How time has flown. It has been a month since working at the big metropolitan city. Work seems to be hectic at times, sometimes even stressful. I have become more senior, but I some how still don’t feel ready. It’s that anxiety all over again. Am I good enough in the eyes of others around me?

What has been reassuring I suppose, was the revelation that I was still  expected to discuss every single paediatric case with either the registrar or consultant. This was revealed to me just a week ago when I had to meet my supervisor. What a relief in knowing that I wasn’t expected to be managing cases all on my own.

What still makes me extremely anxious, is in venepuncture. With 8 year olds+, I’m reasonably ok, but it’s the little babies that still worries me. If I miss, I’ll have to call a senior doctor given that it is incredibly distressing for the babies and the parents. I would like to, no in fact, I need the practice,  but every time the mother says something like “oh yea, he’s really difficult and it would be best if an experienced doctor could do it”, so I always end up asking the registrar.

I also find that 10 hour shifts seems a bit long, in that when I finish work, I find I have no time to relax. Well, it’s the pace that it works at, and I suppose I’ll have to adapt.

Another 2 and a bit hours and I’ll be heading to work. Not feeling entirely 100% since I have been recovering from a cold (I had to take yesterday off due to illness), but I still have to go.

I wonder what else I can do to break the routine of work and just home? Perhaps some volunteer work? Perhaps join some local clubs (where I can possibly meet the love of my life?) I think I need to find a girlfriend this year.