Archive for tag: alumni

Happy Halloween

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.

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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 mind).

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 Illinois.

Ideas for the Future

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. 

Down Time

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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. 

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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 my face.