Archive for tag: campus life

Snowy Days in Chicago

Well, we knew winter was going to sneak up on us at some point. It seemed that a January without snowfall was too good to be true. According to the records, this weekend's blizzard was the 5th largest snowfall Chicago has ever seen. We're a lot tougher than we look in the Midwest! It was great to see people coming together to help salt sidewalks, shovel cars out of the snow, and share rides around the city. I never thought I'd see the day when I had to walk down the street to purchase a shovel that I needed just to be able to drive my car! Oh, the challenges of living in the city of Chicago!

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When we have snow days at school, you have to take full advantage of the extra time away from class. I spent the past few days catching up with close friends, exploring new places in the city, and enjoying great food. For my Type A personality, it feels great to have a break from the normal routine of class and clinic!

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Coming up this week, I'm looking forward to getting together with The Ohio Club members at National to gear up for events in 2015. It's exciting to share a common connection with fellow students interested in practicing in the same state and area, especially to support each other when making tough decisions about our futures! I hope that over the next few years, other state clubs are formed at National and can offer a sense of community for other students from different areas.

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On another positive note, congratulations to the Clinic team (Trimesters 8, 9, 10) who won the dodgeball tournament at Tri-Games on Friday night! Although I was not in attendance, I heard the Clinic team rocked the court!

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I'm looking forward to seeing the sunshine again this week and hopefully no more snow here at NUHS! :)

McKenzie Method and Tri Mixer

McKenzie Method

Recently at NUHS, I attended a weekend course taught by The McKenzie Institute USA. This educational foundation has developed a method to diagnose and treat patients suffering with musculoskeletal pain originating from the spine and extremities. Robin McKenzie was the founder of this institution, which began researching disorders of the musculoskeletal system in 1982. Since its beginning, McKenzie Method was utilized primarily by physical therapists, but it has in recent years become more accessible to chiropractic physicians.

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(Photo courtesy of The McKenzie Institute, New Zealand)

One of the most unique features of McKenzie Method is the concept that patients have the power and responsibility to help treat themselves through exercises and lifestyle modifications. This also adds a component of compliance to each patient's treatment plan, assuming that they will actively work to help correct and maintain proper posture and movement patterns. McKenzie treatment involves the patient in actively caring for their symptoms, which has an empowering effect that is able to eliminate pain for each person in the end.

I was enrolled in the Part A course, the first of the series toward certification that is geared toward focusing on the lumbar spine. With our class size of about 20 people, an even mix of both students and practicing doctors, we were able to work hands-on with two patients who were coming in complaining of low back pain. We practiced running through a McKenzie-based physical examination, taking a thorough history with the patient, and going through the diagnostic protocol that are used to help identify the classification of different pain presentations.

Once we were able to identify the type of mechanical back pain we were dealing with, we proceeded to work on exercises with each patient to help reduce and relieve their pain in different regions. The most rewarding aspect of the weekend was to see both of the patients leave the seminar with a reduction in their low back pain as well as in their radiating pain.

Getting to work with current DCs throughout the seminar was such a tremendous experience, and there was much clinical knowledge to be gained from these doctors! I even had the opportunity to meet Dr. Anthony Hamm, the current president of the American Chiropractic Association! In a couple weeks, we will be returning to complete Part A of the seminar.

Now that I am an intern in clinic, I'm beginning to hone in on what seminars I hope to take in the next year and what types of additional skills I want to obtain for practice. At National and in the Chicago area, there are so many tremendous seminars and certifications available for us as students. With all of the developments in the field of medicine, it will be valuable to have other skill sets such as McKenzie to offer to my future patients when I am in practice.

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Tri-Mixer

Last Friday night was our tri-mixer where all of the students were invited to come out and meet each other. As an officer for Student Council who helped plan the event, it's always fulfilling to see tons of students come and participate in social events! The cold and the snow can't hold us back from enjoying a weekend night out with friends (like my friend KC and I)! :)

Fall Is Here

Nothing says fall quite like the changing of the leaves, the crisp afternoon air, or a good pumpkin spice latte from your café of choice. But wait, I'm sure you were thinking, "HOW could she forget pumpkin carving?"

This week, SACA (short for the Student American Chiropractic Association) hosted a pumpkin carving event for students and faculty. After a disastrous creative attempt last year, I channeled all my energy and precision into one artistic pumpkin, which also serves as a proud reminder of my home, Ohio. I was told that there was to be a contest for the best pumpkin, but unfortunately for me, this is college football season, and despite my artistic abilities, my allies are few and far between. ;)

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So what is SACA, you may ask? The Student American Chiropractic Association is a local, student-run chapter of the American Chiropractic Association (ACA). This club is our opportunity to get involved in our profession early, and there are endless benefits for being involved while being a student.

Every year, SACA brings students from NUHS to the National Chiropractic Leadership Conference (NCLC) in Washington, DC, where we meet with current doctors in the field, leaders within the ACA, and members of congress who will fight for our profession. Students join the fight to educate our country's political leaders about the benefits of chiropractic and why we deserve an equal place in the health care field.

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On a more local note, SACA holds weekly informative meetings open to students of all programs. Recent workshops include practicing "elevator speeches" to use when asked about chiropractic, discussing the role of ethics in health care and especially alternative medicine, interviewing new physicians about their experiences in practice, and many other valuable topics. Our student leaders within SACA have done a terrific job at encouraging student involvement and a sense of community among our student population, and I look forward to future opportunities the club will offer.

To learn more about what SACA has to offer, check out the ACA's website.

The Eagle Has Found Its Nest

All right, so my title is a bit silly, but it's also quite fitting. This week, students, faculty, and staff joined together to celebrate the grand opening of the Eagle's Nest at our Lombard campus.

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Move that bus!

The Eagle's Nest is the new "student hub" here at NUHS, serving as a place for people to congregate for lunch, conversation, study-breaks, and relaxation. The Eagle's Nest is open 24/7 and is now the best location available on campus for students wishing to study at any hour of the day. Beginning the first day, students and faculty have been taking advantage of this gorgeous new lounge located in Janse Hall. This was a much-needed space for students, who have been looking for a casual place to relax between classes and gather with friends.

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With President Stiefel in the Eagle's Nest

We also held a mascot-naming contest in October to promote school spirit and get students involved. Our official NUHS mascot is "Fitz" the Eagle, named after our institution's founding father, John Fitz Alan Howard.

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Eagle Pride

Integrative Pediatric Care

Over the weekend, I took a course offered by our Lincoln College of Postprofessional, Graduate and Continuing Education titled "Pediatrics for the Integrative Medicine Practitioner." The instructor, Dr. Robert Dumont, is an MD who realizes the importance of integrative medicine and utilizes natural therapies to help relieve children of illness.

We covered different therapies such as traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture, homeopathic medicine, and dietary modifications. All of these categories of therapies can be utilized and combined to naturally treat common pediatric conditions without intervention of pharmaceuticals.

One of the biggest concepts I took away from the seminar was the importance of diet and nutrition in childhood wellness. Food sensitivities to dairy, soy, and gluten can have a myriad of negative effects on different systems throughout the body, and they present as an incredibly diverse array of symptoms. Sometimes, a thorough lifestyle evaluation and simple observation of the child tell us exactly where the problem is arising, and exactly where we can intervene. It was a very unique and beneficial seminar that provided me with great reference material for treating children in my future practice!

Physician in Training

One of the most exciting courses in 7th trimester is Advanced Diagnosis and Problem Solving, and I am definitely doing a lot of problem solving, that's for sure!

Two days a week, we are in the clinic with simulated patients, or "sim patients" as we have grown to say. We encounter a brand new patient, gain practice taking a thorough history, performing the appropriate physical exams, establishing a diagnosis or diagnoses, and reporting our findings with the patient. Nobody said becoming a doctor was easy, and this class is a representation of the challenges many students face when learning to interact with patients.

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Sometimes, the patient's clinical presentation is simple, and you know exactly what steps need to be performed to establish the diagnosis. Other times, the pieces don't fit together and you find yourself researching a condition you studied a year ago, trying to ask the appropriate questions to ensure you are on the right track. This is the challenge of becoming a doctor: having the responsibility of someone's health and wellbeing, but also being able to think critically on your toes and establish a comforting relationship with that patient, all in a 30-minute period. I have a long way to go until I feel more confident during my patient encounters, but I accept the challenge!

Tri-Mixer

On Friday night, Student Council hosted its Fall Tri-Mixer at a local venue that we all know fondly as Rita's. Between the dancing, the photos, and all the laughter, I hope everyone had a great night out! It's important to spend time with your peers outsidethe classroom, getting to know people for who they are and as friends. To all of the new 1st trimester students who attended, we hope you got to know some of your other classmates and enjoyed a night off from studying all that anatomy! :)