It simply is the best time of the year! Between the costumes,
decorations, pumpkins, crisp fall air, trick-or-treaters, candy,
and the occasional scare--what is there not to love about
Halloween? Nothing, that's what I say. On Thursday, I went to the
17th Annual North Halsted Street Halloween Parade. I saw a lot of
repeat costumes of Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke from the VMAs, Duck
Dynasty, and Walter White from Breaking Bad. But my favorite
costumes were Pepper from American Horror Story, the twins from The
Shining, and Oogie Boogie from The Nightmare Before Christmas. All
very well done.
At this point in the trimester, pretty much all the tenth
trimester interns are finished up with their patient care numbers
for graduation. Therefore, all the patient care has been turned
over to us ninth trimester interns, including any new patients that
come in. I was lucky enough to get a new patient this week that was
a National University of Health Sciences alumnus. As an alumnus of
the university, you are given free patient care at any of our
clinics, which I think is a pretty nice perk.
This week in my acupuncture elective we covered the spleen
meridian. This meridian runs from the armpit to the foot on both
sides of the body with 21 points a practitioner can use. Some
common aliments that can be treated using this meridian include:
enteritis, musculoskeletal pain, and disorders that increase
dampness. Another function of the spleen meridian is to cleanse and
'modify' the blood, and it also houses the body's Yi (wisdom
Any additional free time has been dedicated to studying for Part
IV Board Exams, which are the following weekend. I will be taking
Part IV in Davenport, Iowa, at Palmer College of Chiropractic. The
exam covers X-ray interpretation and diagnosis, chiropractic
technique, and case management. The diagnostic imaging section
covers cases that are commonly seen in practice and cases that
should raise red flags. The chiropractic technique section covers
cervical, thoracic, lumbar, pelvic, and extremity manipulations.
The case management portion covers orthopedic tests, neurologic
exam, case history taking, and physical examination. Currently,
every state requires Part IV boards to practice except
In my ethical business management class this week, Kevin J.
Pelton, JD, DC, spoke to our class about future financial
independence, practice options, risk management, and the reality of
being a doctor. He graduated in 1987 with his law degree and later
in the '90s from NUHS with his chiropractic medicine degree. Dr.
Pelton has had a very successful career, and as of today he sees
patients in three clinics and has hospital privileges in the city
where he practices.
The first idea he presented was about having goals and dreams in
mind for your future. His suggestion was to keep a small notebook
with you to write down your goals, so they are always present in
your day-to-day life. By having goals at all times, you ensure
productivity in your daily life. The goals you have throughout life
may change from career to family to social to leisure, and the key
to achieving them is letting go of self-imposed limitations.
The next topic Dr. Pelton covered was practice options that are
available for us when we graduate. With the average associateship
lasting about 2.7 years, new grads need to have other practice
options ready to go. Some tips for success in opening a practice
include: keeping overhead low, having a small efficient office,
leasing minimal equipment when opening, using highly integrated
technology, and making office hours convenient for patients. The
final option he presented was integrating into a hospital setting
to practice, which he has done in a hospital in the OB/GYN
department in his hometown. Integrating into a hospital in the
Chicago area is a goal of mine in the future, so I have sent an
email to him to discuss how to get started with that process. More
details to come.
Another topic Dr. Pelton covered was what it means to be a
physician. Some important ways to make a connection with your
patients are matching the energy level of the patient, being caring
and responsive, and most importantly going above beyond what is
merely expected of you. Also, it is important to render a
diagnosis and not a report of findings. Most patients find a long
drawn-out report of findings to be confusing and unclear, and
others will stop listening halfway through. By having a clear and
concise diagnosis, you are able to set a solid foundation for that
patient visit and how the future visits will be directed. Finally,
do not push patient relationships too quickly. By matching the
patient's energy and comfort level, you are able to move forward
with the doctor-patient relationship at a pace that's comfortable
for both of you.
Another pot of flowers on our roof deck. We finished
planting this weekend.
Earlier this week started with an Evo hair show that I attended
with the fabulous XO Studio stylists Sunday evening. Evo is an
all-natural, organic hair product line from Australia. This quote
from their website (evohair.com) sums up why I am now in love with
them, "Evo steps outside the normal realm of truth-stretching
invention in a 'wake up and smell the coffee' crusade of twisted
honesty--designed to make people think. And so comes the catch
phrase--saving ordinary humans from themselves!" As a non-stylist,
I was invited to attend the event with by a good friend, Charlie
Bonanno, the owner of the best new salon in Lakeview, XO Studio.
The event was really informative, super interesting, and most
importantly full of free products.
Then on Saturday, I traveled down to Indianapolis for my
partner's niece's graduation party. It was a really nice
celebration, and a great day with family and friends. The day was
also exciting in a way because it made me think about how very near
my graduation actually is. In 325 days, give or take a few, I'll be
walking across a stage with a diploma in my hand and giant smile on
• First Patients and Jurisprudence Class
• Ideas for the Future
• Part IV Board Exams
To read older blog posts, scroll to the bottom and click the "Older Posts" button.