Diagnostic Ultrasound, Volleyball Tournament, and SACA Fundraiser

I have reached the end of trimester six with 13 weeks of classes down and two weeks of finals to go!

This past week, we had a guest speaker come and discuss diagnostic ultrasound for musculoskeletal injuries. Dr. Khong Lamvichit is a chiropractor in Chicago, Illinois, and is a 2013 alumnus of NUHS Florida. He is a member of the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine and uses diagnostic ultrasound every day in his practice.

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Dr. Lamvichit brought the equipment to demonstrate in class. It was incredible to be able to plug in the machine and immediately see the desired anatomical structures without any large expensive equipment like one would need for an MRI or X-Ray. We looked at a shoulder and an elbow during class. The device allows both the doctor and the patient to see the desired structure in real time. It can also help the doctor differentiate between acute and chronic problems based on the amount of perfusion, which can be measured with the machine. I was completely unaware of this technology, I knew about diagnostic ultrasound for pregnant mothers and therapeutic ultrasound for musculoskeletal injuries but did not know one could use it for musculoskeletal imaging. This is a powerful tool that can be used in the chiropractic office and help streamline the patient's treatment plan because the doctor wouldn't have to wait for diagnostic imaging to be taken elsewhere.

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With finals coming, I already know stress is pretty much guaranteed, so with that in mind, I enjoyed the weekend as much as possible. On Saturday, my friend Kelsey and I entered the Tampa Bay Beach Bums Co-ed Volleyball Tournament in Gulfport, Florida. We played three games in pool play before advancing to the playoffs. We won the first game and then lost to the number one seed in the semi-finals. It was a great time. Playing beach volleyball in December made it that much better as my home state of New Jersey has been in the mid 40s all week.

On Sunday, our chapter of the Student American Chiropractic Association hosted a golf tournament at the Bardmoor Golf and Tennis Club in Largo, Florida. This was our fundraiser for the trimester. We are raising money for our trip to Washington D.C. for the National Chiropractic Leadership Conference. We had a student team in the tournament that was paid for by four extremely generous faculty members. I want to extend my gratitude to President Stiefel, Dr. Guadagno, Dr. Petrocco-Napuli, and Dr. Miley for sponsoring the student team.

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It was a great turnout! We had raffles, sponsorships from the Florida Chiropractic Association and local organizations, as well as players from Kiwanis Club of Seminole. It was so much fun! I haven't golfed in years but thankfully we were playing best ball so if I hit a bad shot it didn't affect our score too much. We had a diverse group of students from all points in the program -- Nick in 10th tri, Jack in 4th tri, Steve in 1st tri, and myself in 6th tri. We all hit the course to play golf on a beautiful afternoon in December. The course was beautiful but the company was even better. We had a great time and raised money for our trip. Unfortunately we came in second by one stroke. Nevertheless, it was certainly an unforgettable weekend.

Finals are here and after my final exams I will be heading home to New Jersey for some well-deserved time off. This trimester was difficult at times but well worth it. I am moving to trimester seven and will begin clinic in trimester eight. There is still a lot of work to be done.

If you have questions please email me at ChristopherKotwicki@student.nuhs.edu.

Thanksgiving Break

I had a shortened week because we had off Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving. Though it was a shortened week we still had a normal workload on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. We went over how to proficiently take notes in The Clinical Encounter, went over glucose tolerance testing in lab diagnosis, looked over tendinopathies in Orthopedic Imaging, and had a mock practical exam in physical diagnosis.

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Every Wednesday we have phlebotomy class, where my classmates and I practice blood draws on one another. We have also been going over the order of the draw, meaning the order of the collection tubes when one must draw more than one tube. Each tube has a different colored top. The colors represent different enzymes within the tube and each tube is therefore used for a different reason. Some tubes are used for clotting time, others are used for blood cell count, and others for nutrient measurements. We have been memorizing the order and the purpose of each tube in preparation for the written final.

The mock practical in physical diagnosis was on the orthopedic tests for the neck, shoulder, elbow, wrist, low back, knee, and ankle. We will have a practical in a week and a half so it was good to get an idea of how proficient we are in our orthopedic exams.

The 8th Annual Turkey Bowl

Every year for the past eight years, the students, faculty, and friends of National University of Health Sciences gather at St. Petersburg College Seminole campus for a night of food, football, and fun. The event is catered by a local restaurant owned by the family of an alumnus. It is also sponsored by Performance Health, the company that makes Biofreeze and Theraband. We all received free T-shirts and drawstring bags courtesy of Biofreeze. There were also raffles and giveaways for extra prizes!

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Last year's Turkey Bowl was amazing but I fell short of the championship, we lost in the final game on the last play of the game. I showed up to Turkey Bowl this year with the championship in my sights. We have a single elimination flag football tournament consisting of four teams. Each team consists of seven or eight players and the games are 30 minutes of 7-on-7 with a running clock. I played quarterback for the first game and racked up three passing touchdowns, then played wide receiver. Our team went to overtime in both of our games. I had the go-ahead receiving touchdown in the final game before they tied it up to send it to overtime. Charged down the field and scored in overtime and we won the championship! 

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After the games we announced the winning team, the most valuable professor, and most valuable player. Dr. Strauss won the most valuable faculty member, and to my surprise, I won the most valuable player! The school gave me a stability ball and a roll of kinesiology tape. It was an awesome experience one that I will never forget because I never won an MVP in any sporting event I ever participated in. We took a group picture, cleaned up the park, and said goodnight. I wish Turkey Bowl was every trimester! Unfortunately I have to wait an entire year for the next one but it was a fantastic experience.

On that note I would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Thank you for reading my blog, if you have any questions please email me at ChristopherKotwicki@student.nuhs.edu

 

Pharmacology Exam and Ribfest

Last week was short because we had off for Veteran's Day. I have friends and family who are veterans so I want to thank them and all veterans for their service to this country.

Prior to Friday, we had a Pharmacology exam on Thursday. My class and I spent weeks preparing for the second of three Pharmacology exams, and we did a pretty good job. The exam was composed of questions about anti-hypertensives, anti-hyperlipidemics, CNS depressants, and CNS stimulants. Our Pharmacology class is taught by Dr. Daniel Richardson who has a PhD in Pharmacology and is an expert in nutrition and botanical medicine. We are constantly discussing what prescriptions are used for each condition, their mechanisms of action, and natural alternatives we can use in our scope. If doctors of chiropractic earn prescriptive rights one day, we will be prepared to answer the call.

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Saturday my fellow students and I volunteered at Ribfest in downtown St. Petersburg in Vinoy Park. Ribfest is a three-day concert and event that raises money for children's charities and organizations such as All Children's Hospital, the YMCA, the Boy Scouts, Children's Aid Foundation, the Red Cross, and many more. We volunteered in the family fun zone and our job was to have fun with the kids.

It was a great turnout and after we closed the family fun zone, we headed over to the stage for concert. The headlining band was the Doobie Brothers, one of the classics and an all-time favorite band of mine. They were excellent and we each contributed time and money to the event to help make a difference in the lives of children. It was a very successful day and I am happy that NUHS contributes to the event every year.

That's all for this week. If you have any questions about student life at NUHS in Florida, please email me at ChristopherKotwicki@student.nuhs.edu

Chiropractic Games 2016

Every year in late October or early November, all the chiropractic schools from the U.S. and Canada gather in Florida to compete in sports. This event is known as the Chiropractic Games and this past weekend was the 25th anniversary of the games!

National University has two sites, one in Illinois and one in Florida, but for the Chiropractic Games we are one school and we come together to form teams for multiple sports. Last year I ran and played soccer, but this year I also played basketball! For some, this event is a chance to get away and have fun, for others, like myself, it is an opportunity to compete and a reason to train all year.

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The weekend was filled with exercise, competition, camaraderie, and enjoyment above all else. I loved meeting our colleagues from Illinois and fellow chiropractic students from other schools. I made a lot of new friends from NUHS Illinois but also from schools like NYCC, Parker, Palmer, Sherman, and Logan. Events like this are a great reminder that we are all in this together, though we are from different schools, we are the future of the profession and may be working with one another after we graduate.

The first day I ran the 5k with a goal of running under 20 minutes but fell just shy of my goal and ran the 5k in 20 minutes and 16 seconds. I went on to play three soccer games, scoring a goal in our second game, and I finished the first day by playing a basketball game. Later that night we went to a local bar with a live band and danced all night. Students from all the schools were there and we had a great time!

The following day I ran a two-mile race in just over 13 minutes, then played a soccer game, and finished with a basketball game. Afterwards, we enjoyed some food and drinks at the beach bar at the hotel. It was an awesome weekend and a nice break from all the stresses of school and life. It was only a two and a half hour drive away for NUHS Florida students, a much closer distance and shorter travel time than almost every other school. We drove back on Sunday afternoon to get ready for class on Monday.

The weekend was amazing, I made friends and memories that will last a lifetime, and I look forward to next year, which will be my last chiropractic games!

Thanks for reading my blog, if you have any questions please email me at ChristopherKotwicki@student.nuhs.edu