Ups and Downs

Maybe its too soon to be talking about ups and downs but here I go anyways. Being a medical student means you are the most useless member of a team of doctors…real doctors. You are the person that no one notices. The one with the least amount of clinical knowledge and limited contributions. Why does this come up? Well many reasons. As I am realizing there is little continuity with the new BU schedule change. Instead of being the same team for 2-4 weeks, everyone keeps leaving at random intervals. The team I started with had 1 HMS student, 2 veteran interns, 1 veteran resident and 1 attending. After my 3rd day, one of the interns finished and we got a new one. One day after that we lost the HMS student. Today was the other veteran intern’s last day. 1 week from now the resident is gone and so is the attending and so is that intern that we just picked up.

Every new member significantly changes the dynamics of team. The older interns are experienced, overworked and lacking motivation. New interns are just out of medical school and learning to adjust to not being constantly evaluated and actually being responsible for a number of patients. It hard to constantly find your place on a team when the people and the overall work experience of the team is also changing.

On the POSITIVE, the resident is awesome and because of that I have gotten to do some things that I never imagined doing on my first week on the job. Not only have I been juggling multiple patients, but I got to drain an abscess! Ok. Maybe that sounds more gross than cool but it was awesome. There was lidocaine, scalpels, gauze, sterile gloves and wicks. Oh yes, and MRSA. It was lovely. The patient was a 50 something male that worked as a nurse and has a history of caring MRSA as part of his normal flora. I guess he got a really bad haircut and somehow MRSA started growing there making painful nodules on the back of his neck. The area was so tender and painful. At first I thought the whole experience was so cool. The intern had already done 3 of these on the same guy earlier so he was tired of doing it. Once we finished cutting open the abcess, we packed the wound with sterile cotton. Then came the traumatizing part – changing the old cotton. It really shook me up to see some one wince and scream like that. I had literally just cut the guy’s head open and he didn’t say a thing – now I see him screaming from pain. I was hit with shock.

Tomorrow is scrub day…my favorite day ever!

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