Sunday, August 23, 2015

To my Fellow Medical Students: Beware before Judging your Residents, for you may Easily Become them

A recent paper in the Annals of Internal Medicine has sparked a large news media response.

In it, two incidents are described: in one, a male obstetrician-gynecologist is prepping a patient's vaginal area for surgery, which involves running a brush soaked in betadine or chloraprep solution over the labia, mons pubis, perineum, and inner thighs when the patient is already put to sleep by anesthesia.  He makes an appalling joke, "I bet she is enjoying this".

In the second, another male obstetrician-gynecology resident runs into a room with a patient bleeding to death from her vagina.  He controls the bleeding with manual pressure, putting his hand into the woman's vagina.  And then, when the crisis is over, he starts dancing and singing, while his hand is still in the woman's vagina, keeping the woman from bleeding again.

Many comments, especially from other medicals students, are condemning the behavior of these doctors and likening it to sexual assault.

I make no excuses for this behavior.  But while it is easy for us as medical students to judge, the reality is that residency will put us all at risk of becoming these doctors.  The lesson here should not be "what monsters!", but rather "I must make sure I never become them".

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Medical Student Mental Health: the Root Cause is the Grading System

For two years, I served as a representative to my medical school's Student Affairs committee.  My job was to convey medical student concerns and problems.  As part of that role, I had a lot of time to think about how and why many medical students experience depression and stress, which is an incredibly large problem.  At one school, prior to intervention, 27% of students had depression and over 55% had anxiety. Two recent articles have led me to write about the issue now.

Chiropractors Must Join MDs, DOs, Podiatrists, Dentists, Nurses, OT, PT, etc. in Embracing Science

I am a pretty new 4th year medical student who has spent a grand total of 1 year on the wards. Despite this paucity of clinical experience, I have now personally seen 2 patients who have had strokes after chiropractors "adjusted" their necks. This is not an unknown phenomenon: