Friday, February 19, 2016

Block 3 Week 4: Nobody thinks it will work, do they? No. You just described every great success story.

General update: Things are clipping along at a pace that is slightly faster than I think my feet can keep up. Medical school has been described often as drinking from a firehose. I get tired of that description, mostly because everyone says it -- all the time. I feel more like on day one, I was tethered to the back of an out of control careening 18-wheeler wearing only one roller blade that may be coming untied. With a firehose, I feel like you can close your mouth and turn your head. The kind of constant fight-or-flight activation that might occur flying along behind a speeding vehicle is more in line with what's going on with me pretty much all the time. I can't let go, I can't tie my shoe, and there's no time for any extra side business such as getting sick or family issues. I guess when things are constantly flying at you, it keeps you engaged for sure. I also kinda feel like once I think I'm getting the hang of things, they throw in another wheelbarrow full of crap I have to do. But currently, I feel like I'm surviving. But don't tell them.

We are getting ready for another clinical skills day for this block. This one involves the proper way to put on sterile gloves in such a manner as to keep them sterile. Oh, and lumbar puncture. I just wonder if anyone in charge up there wondered whether 3/4 through the first year of medical school was the best time to learn how to stick a NEEDLE in a person's SPINE. Of course, we are using mannikins, so there will be no real spines harmed in this training exercise. The video I watched last night kept saying over and over that lumbar puncture is one of the easiest techniques to learn. I guess the steps are simple, but the overwhelming weight of the potential horrible things you could do poking needles around in there is just a little scary.

Then there was the baby. The last part of the video showed an actual LP on an infant. The doctor performing the procedure did a great job. He was very confident, and his technique was perfect. I'm sure he has a lot of experience performing this procedure on babies, so he just jumps in there and handles it. I can't imagine doing something like that to a baby. I know I'm going to have to, but the idea is just extremely off-putting. One of my children had to have an LP when he was 2 weeks old, and I couldn't stay in the room. I'm definitely squigged out by lumbar puncture, but with a baby it's like triple-squigged. Stay tuned...

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