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
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!
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! :)
Ah yes, another busy week has come and gone as a student in the
I began Week 9 with a larger level of anxiety and a smaller
amount of free time. In our Physical Diagnosis class, we were
expected to perform our Head-to-Toe physical exam in the Training
and Assessment Center (TAC) of the clinic. Although we had been
practicing for weeks, nothing can fully prepare you for the
nervousness that accompanies a 50-minute physical exam, memorized
in a specific order and graded for accuracy. Since the exam was
held in the TAC, we performed the practical on a standardized
patient, and what you don't realize is that giving sufficient
patient instructions throughout the exam are half of the battle!
The Head-to-Toe exam consists of an examination of the head and
neck, EENT exam, cardiac exam, pulmonary exam, abdominal exam,
neurological exam, and a handful of other miscellaneous tests
thrown in between. Whew, am I glad that practical is over, but I am
proud to say I took away a tremendous amount of knowledge and
In Tri 6, the Imaging of Tumors course is the class that
challenges many students. (It sure is tricky to differentiate 30
different types of skeletal tumors on black and white X-ray films!)
Fortunately, I felt sufficiently prepared for both the practical
and written portions of the midterm, so I was content with my
performance and had a nice confidence boost to end the week. :)
Thursday night, I took off for Bemidji, Minnesota, with my
friend and classmate, Bethany. Having both grown up in the town and
been a collegiate athlete at the Bemidji State University, I was
excited to experience this scenic, friendly Minnesota city that she
had so often talked about! We spent the 4th of July with her family
on one of Minnesota's 10,000 lakes, and although the weather that
day was not cooperating with the holiday festivities, we celebrated
later that night by watching fireworks on the water. On Saturday,
we made up for the previous storms by spending the day relaxing on
the lake, jet-skiing, tubing, and most importantly, laughing. It
was hard to say goodbye to her family and make the 10-hour drive
home on Sunday afternoon, but the memories we made throughout the
holiday weekend were worth it! My first trip to Bemidji was a
terrific experience, and I look forward to (hopefully) going back
to visit next summer!
Back at National, we still have midterms and quizzes for the
next couple weeks, but I can see the end of the trimester in sight!
Summer sure flies by when you're having fun!
• 5-Minute NUHS Campus Tour
• What I Learned in 6th Tri
• Opportunities Outside the Classroom
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