Hello, again. What a weekend I had. After clinic last Friday, I
met a few friends at Tampa International Airport and took off to
Atlanta, Georgia. We flew up to meet another friend who had
recently moved to Atlanta, plus attend the Music Midtown music
festival. We could not have asked for a nicer weekend for a music
festival; the sun was shining, the wind was crisp, and the music
was incredible. My pals and I jammed out to Ludacris, Florence +
The Machine, Neon Trees, and Pearl Jam throughout the day on
Saturday. I made it home late afternoon Sunday, was asleep by 9:30
p.m. and ready to go this morning...for the most part.
With friends at the Midtown Music festival.
Today's blog somewhat plays into last week's submission, which
spoke about being prepared for each patient encounter. Today I'd
like to talk about peach pie. No, this isn't a foodie blog, and I
won't be handing out a recipe per se, but last week I heard the
analogy of peach pie, and today I'll share it with you.
So, to make a good peach pie the first thing you need is good
peaches. If you make your way into the forest half-heartedly
looking for peaches and end up picking up rabbit poop, you're going
to end up with a pretty crappy peach pie. How does this story
relate to seeing patients? If you are evaluating the patient and
not looking for the right things, you end up with a "crappy"
diagnosis. Get it?
As a doctor you have to think like a doctor; you have to put
things together and look for things that aren't always readily
apparent. Always remember, your patients haven't read the textbooks
and may not always present exactly how the book tells you they
should. An orthopedic test might yield a "negative" response to
what its textbook definition is, but may in turn tell you
everything you need to know in a significant other finding. It's
all about looking for the right ingredients. Let the patient show
or tell you what's wrong. Don't tunnel vision yourself into a
diagnosis or orthopedic test finding and end up just picking up
rabbit poop. Be present during each patient interaction. Look at
every aspect of that patient and take something away from each
thing they tell you, what they can do, and what they can't; it will
all be leading you to the peaches you need for a quality
Pearl Jam at the Midtown Music festival.
I hope my analogy today made some sense. I tend to gravitate to
the offbeat ways of learning, so this was right in my wheelhouse. I
love dealing with patients; it's like putting together a puzzle.
You really have to keep an open mind and look and listen to
everything the patient says and does to find where all the pieces
fit together. Man, I'm full of analogies today.
I hope everyone has a killer week. Remember to always keep an
open mind, and never stop practicing!
Hello, all. I hope everyone who took boards this past weekend is
happy they're behind them. The good news is, I've been hearing from
everyone that they were well prepared. That's one thing about our
education here at National, if nothing else, we are prepared for
board exams. I know at the time it seems as if some of the
information you see in power points or highlighted in notes is
there for no apparent reason, but trust me, that one line that you
disregard will be back in some shape or form to haunt you.
I have written in past blogs how I like to study and prepare for
exams, which may help, and I also have a ton of board study
material that I am more than willing to share. If anyone would like
to get a head start on studying, please don't hesitate to ask, and
I'll send you any information I can.
Speaking of being prepared, that's the name of the game when you
hit clinic. Now that I am a big bad 10th trimester
intern (HaHa) that is the one piece of advice I have been giving to
all the new student interns. When I hit the clinic, it was a unique
circumstance where we were short-handed on interns and I had to hit
the ground running. My fellow interns and I didn't have the option
of not being prepared; we had patients day one.
Being prepared mentally for every visit is a key part of giving
the best care possible to your patients. We have all the tools
necessary to treat our patients when we hit
8th trimester, the challenge is putting it all
together and knowing when and when not to use certain tools. I was
speaking with a student intern this morning whose first freshman
physical was today, and she was a little nervous, understandably.
We sat together and talked through the entire visit from start to
finish, and when we were done, her nerves had settled and she was
prepared to rock out a freshman physical. It really is that simple.
Having a mental map of your visit sets you at ease and encourages
an efficient visit--two birds, one stone.
This weekend I took a brake from preparing, and enjoyed some
serious sports. My pals and I watched the FSU Seminoles put on an
exhibition against Wake Forrest, winning 52-0 on Saturday, followed
by being disappointed by the Rays and Bucs on Sunday. New York had
our number this past weekend. The Bucs put up a heck of a fight
against the Giants, and the Rays looked decent against the Yanks,
but sadly they both bettered us in the end.
Sunday wasn't all bad. I recorded a fantasy football win, and
enjoyed myself at a pig roast with friends. I hope everyone has a
great week, and remember to never stop practicing.
Hello all and welcome to my final trimester's blog! I can't
believe that in 3 short months I will be a full-fledged Doctor of
It seems like last week that I was sitting listening to Dr. Joe
Stiefel warn us of how rigorous the next few years will be. He
wasn't joking either. Now, as I look back on the trimesters past,
it seems like it was all a breeze; but if I really sit and remember
how my life was just a few years ago I realize that I was a hermit
and slave to everything chiropractic. I would wake up and arrive on
campus hours before my first class to study, duck out of lunch
early to review material, and get home and read for another few
hours before passing out to be ready to do it all again the next
day. After remembering all of that, I still would not change a
The truth is, I love what I've gotten into and after working in
the clinic for the past 8 months, and I can honestly say I have a
passion for what I'm doing. For all the prospective DCs reading
this, that is the key to not going crazy and being a successful
student and eventual doctor. Have a passion for what you are
getting yourself into, and please do not trick yourself into
thinking that this program is an easy way get a doctorate degree,
because it most definitely is not. Sorry, I'm not sure where that
rant came from. Anyway, I'm stoked to get my final trimester
underway and even more excited for graduation in December.
This is only the first blog of the tri, and I plan on hitting as
many topics as I can regarding different treatment options, getting
ready for graduation, what I'm planning for after graduating, and
probably some embarrassing stories from the weekends or when
something goes amiss with a patient. If anyone out there ever has a
question, please shoot me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
and I will do my best to answer your query--and you may get a shout
out on the blog--after all, this blog for is you guys, the
For anyone who may have missed it, my birthday was last week
(yes, I am still accepting presents), which meant a weeklong
celebration, all kicked off by a killer surprise from my fellow
interns, Dr. Heiser, and Shirley Raychel. The remainder of the week
was taken up by dinners with family and friends, a few drinks here
and there (Ha Ha, "a few""), a weekend at the beach, and
3rd row seats to the Bucs season opener on
Sunday. Not too shabby. I hope everyone is getting settled into the
fresh tri and if there is anything I can help with please don't
hesitate to ask.
Catch ya on the flip side,
Well, another tri has come and gone. I can't believe my
9th trimester is already coming to an end. I have
to say it was a pretty eventful tri. Clinic is a great experience
and I'm amazed at how much I still continue to learn. I hope some
of my stories of triumphs and failures were helpful and maybe a
Some of the 8th and 9th Trimester interns.
Finals week is a stressful time everyone. It's important to
continue to prepare for your tests, and be confident that you know
your material. When you know that you have your material down, it
takes the anxiety down to a manageable level. There is a light at
the end of the tunnel, I promise. There are only two weeks of
exams, then a nice break to regroup.
A sunset picture from the boat Friday night.
If you have a chance during the break, reach out to a local DC
to see if you can shadow them. I know you probably want to be as
far away from anything chiro after finals, but shadowing doctors is
one of the best professional moves you can make as a student. I
would try to shadow at least two doctors during each break to
create a relationship with future colleagues and try to see what
works and what doesn't in the real world. It's only a day off your
break and it's extremely worth it.
Sunday night's Rays game.
I hope everyone has a killer break. I had an awesome weekend,
fishing Friday night (caught a 22 inch Snook, and a 40 lb. drum, no
big deal), went to the WaZoo beer and food festival at the zoo on
Saturday, and capped off the weekend at a Rays game on Sunday.
There is always something to do down here in Florida, and with your
break coming up, take advantage and recharge for another trimester.
Thanks for reading; I'll be back in a few weeks.
Hello, all. I can't believe its already Week 13 of the
trimester. Though the break between trimesters doesn't affect us in
the clinic, because we work through the break, it does mean we are
that much closer to graduation. It's not just patient numbers we
need to hit while in clinic, there are also blood chemistry and
urinalysis, SOAP notes, patient narratives, and community service
hours that need to be completed also. It seems monotonous at the
time, but these other requirements really do prepare you for real
life practice. Needless to say we have been busy trying to knock
out all these requirements before December rolls around.
While we've been busy in the clinic, everyone else has been busy
preparing for finals. Since finals are around the corner and it's
been a few trimesters since I wrote about how I study, I thought
it'd be pertinent for this week's blog. The first part of the plan
is to realize that cramming is not the way to go. I had to learn
this the hard way during my first trimester. Studying really should
be done each day to stay current with your material and keep the
topics fresh in your mind throughout the tri. The best way to learn
something is by repetition, like Malcolm Gladwell wrote about in
his book The Outliers, it takes 10,000 hours of practice
to master a skill. Once you are in the proper mind set for
studying, the next step is to get into the material.
Hopefully, through the trimester you have been reading and
highlighting pertinent material in your books. This is the first
step. Our professors do their best to give more attention to more
difficult topics but there is just not enough classroom time to hit
every topic so it will be your job to read up on everything else.
While reading the book, it helps to read aloud and highlight as you
go. This feeds information through several parts of the brain,
which helps with retention. With this same principle in mind, the
next step of the plan is to transcribe book notes and class notes
into a consolidated form. This not only makes you look at the
material another time, but also gives you a compact study guide to
read over as much as you can.
Remember there is no substitution for rest. If it comes down to
getting a good night of sleep or cramming, take the sleep. While
you sleep, your brain continues to review information you
introduced to it before you hit the sack. A solid 8 hours of sleep
will do wonders for retaining information as well as help with test
To recap, read the book aloud and highlight, transcribe your
book and class notes into a solid study guide, and try to get some
sleep. Endurance is the name of the game, if you put in the work
through out the trimester, studying for midterms and finals is
extremely manageable. Don't let the exams stress you out, prepare
as best you can, go into the exam confident and relaxed and you'll
I hope this helps settle some test taking anxieties out there.
After finals are over there's a two-week break waiting for you, so
let that be some of your motivation. Once you hit clinic and your
number of tests drop, you'll have some free time on the weekends to
finally have a social life again.
This past weekend was 2 of my best friends' birthdays, so we
celebrated on the beach. Family and friends got together for some
beach soccer, domino tournament, and a few drinks to top it all
off. It was a killer weekend, and I feel like I need another
weekend to recover from this last one. Study hard; there is a light
at the end of tunnel.
Catch ya later,
• The Florida Campus
• Shadowing a Chiropractor
• President's Visit & Lecture
• What to Do in Florida
To read older blog posts, scroll to the bottom and click the "Older Posts" button.