Friday, April 30, 2010

Speaking of mentoring...

A former co-worker of mine called out of a the blue at 12AM. She claimed the reason she called was because she wanted to know if I would be facebook friends with her. I told her sure, but that you don't generally ask permission to friend request someone.

She then went from that topic to asking if I think it's okay for girls to call back guys. (Random...)

She then asked if I was still gay. (More random) She thought that since I'm around so many girls that I must have turned straight by now. Her cultural background traditionally doesn't quite understand (read as: approve of) homosexuality. But this is a common trend in her life. She often doesn't understand her own desires or behaviors, let alone others'. As introspective as she thinks she is, she generally comes up from the depths of her mind empty handed.

She then said that she knew what she was doing about medical school, but wasn't ready to tell me. She said this without me asking about medical school. I told her she didn't have to tell me, but that she obviously wanted to since she brought it up on her own. Evidently she's planning on going to Cuba and was very afraid of my reaction. I don't even know why she would care. I barely ever speak to her and haven't seen her in real life since working with her.

The conversation only got stranger from this point. In fact it was so strange that I don't think I can even summarize. It basically came down to me calling her out on not living in reality. She gets so caught up in the future, that she's not seeing the world around. I went a little Buddha on her ass. All she thinks about is the "dream life" that she wants. Now I'm all about having goals and such, but you can't become that blinded by them. I truly believe that she's going to be miserable going through this process and that the outcome isn't going to be what she suspects it to be.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm all that successful at Buddhism. But then I see people like this, and I realized how far along I really am. I try to help her "see the light" but it's difficult. How bodhicitta of me.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


A couple of people in my class decided they wanted to organize a mentor group for the incoming PA class. This is so standard of our class. We're always so nice to each other, and helping each other, and doing all these Q+A sessions during the applicant. A group of effing saints. So unlike the current senior class. They want absolutely nothing to do with us, and nothing to do with each other. And if you thought the whining was bad in my class, it's nothing compared to the seniors. The faculty despises them, as do we. But I digress...

So I was asked to take part in this mentor project and I eagerly agreed! I love mentoring people. Back in the day I wanted to be a psychologist because I love talking people through life issues. I'm good at helping putting things into perspective.

This new development has really made me happy and gotten me out of my finals depression.

Class Etiquette: Grade bitching

Our class recently got back a SOAP note assignment. Many people failed. But many more weren't happy with their passing grades. It was an ugly scene. I think it was interesting that the people that didn't fail complained way more about their grade than those who didn't. I'm not surprised about this because the people that complain about grades are generally the more OCD, whiney, gunner students. It therefore makes sense that they were the ones that passed. But for the love of god people don't say things like:

I can't believe the grade I got. I practically copied what someone else did and they got 15 more points than me. With this grade I have a 97 average and I mean that's only 3 point away from not getting an A. There is no reason someone shouldn't get an A in Clinical Application. But you know I really don't care that much about grades.

OMG. STFU. The entire class doesn't want to hear you go on and on and on about your passing grade. Grades don't matter. Your grades especially don't matter to me. And don't tell me you don't care about grades when all you do is bitch about your grades and compare them with other students'.

I was one of the people who failed. I'm fairly indifferent about this. Grades really don't matter when it comes to getting a job. I definitely learned a lot from this assignment. I think it was a positive experience overall. I think things stick with you more when you get them wrong, and then realize why you're wrong. That's not to say that people should aim to get things wrong... But I wish some of my classmates would care more about the comments left on their paper and less about the number on the top.

Scratch that. I'm getting passive aggressively attacked about why I
wanted pa over np and how np is better.

Is it suppose to be a good thing that you have to do less CMEs? Damn
If I had known that then I definitely would have been an NP...

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Today I did something I've never done before. I was so stressed out tonight I had a beer to calm down. Not a fan of this.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Missed Pneumothorax?

My physical went fine today. The NP was nice and we chatted a little. Anytime I mentioned anything about what I'm doing in school she totally ignored it. What eves.

I have self-diagnosed myself with Marfans Syndrome. I didn't tell her this, but she had all the necessary information to make a diagnosis. Tall and thin with long digits, mitral valve prolapse murmur, she also thought she heard a different murmur, borderline glaucoma when I was younger, scoliosis (she did this exam but didn't comment on it), nearsighted, low muscle tone.

So when I was asked about chest pain I told her that I sometimes get stabbing chest pain over my right chest with aerobic exercise. This has been going on since HS. I've never been to concerned about it because it would go away with rest and I never got dizzy. I told her that I actually think it may be a spontaneous pneumothorax. She looked at me totally skeptical. Then I said I'm probably just a crazy PA student that over thinks thing. But I actually do think I have this since I definitely have to some degree Marfans, am a tall white male and spontaneous pneumothorax is a common complication of both of those. And it if you've had one you're more likely to have them again. It's a pneumothorax we're not talking about, not a tail growing out of my arm. They happen.

I guess since I wasn't playing basketball when I got these chest pains then it doesn't count...

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Scared of the NP

I have my annual physical coming up. I have to use my school's health center, because I use my school's insurance and they call the shots. My school has a large nursing program and the student health center I think is run entirely by NPs. I personally have no beef with NPs. This is unfortunately not the case on their end.

Almost every nurse I've met has given me shit about being a PA student. They all question why I would want to be a PA and "never work under your own license." Little do they know I will have my own medical license. I honestly don't even know why they care. They think that because I chose PA over RN/NP that I'm saying it's better than them. How about the fact that I was never a nurse to begin with, so why would I go through that extra training? Also, I don't want to be an RN. I never want to have to work as an RN. It's a thankless, miserable job. I respect RNs, but I definitely don't want to have to do what they do. Hell I did do what they do when I was a medical assistant. I literally had the same responsibilities as the actual nurse at my job, and it SUCKED.

So I know that I don't actually have to worry about how my physical exam is going to go. But I would really prefer if they didn't know I was a PA student. Unfortunately my pages of paper work that I need them to fill out is going to give it away.

womp womp.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Silly Breeders

I had the most horrid Infectious Disease exam today. It was all parasites, hepatitis testing and CD4 count related illnesses. Where was the sepsis, pneumonia, TB, STDs?!?! I wouldn't complain about the hepatitis testing questions if the lecturer had actually explained clearly what each test measured. And when am I ever going to be given ONLY a CD4 count and asked to diagnosis the HIV complication. I mean really people. Throw me ONE symptom.

There was one question though that I unknowingly had an advantage on.

Who is at the highest risk of contracting HIV?

The catcher (anal)
The pitcher (anal)
The pitcher (vaginal)
The catcher (oral)

Score 1 for team gay. Evidently the whole class was really thrown by the question.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Let's Get Real

I've been doing a lot of reading of what is required of people to join the military.  One of the biggest things is that you have to be ready and willing to get shot and killed.  This sounds like a bunch of bullshit.  You think that all those kids coming out of high school have really thought about getting shot and killed seriously?

I ask a question like: what is the likelihood of getting seriously harmed as an Army Medical Specialist (PA) Officer and these are the answers I get.  YOU MUST BE READY AND WILLING TO BE KILLED.  This is not helpful for the logically inclined.  Yes, I'm aware of the dangers.  Could you please answer my question now?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Follow Up

When I'm going through a case study with a faculty member and they start justifying their treatment plans because it avoids litigation it makes the Army sound better and better. I refuse to practice defensive, CYA (cover your ass) medicine.

I say this now...

Monday, April 12, 2010


For a few years the idea of being a military PA has always crossed my mind. I have no idea why. I don't come from a military family. The only members that have been in the armed forced are my grandfathers who were drafted. Unfortunately the only one who saw action died before I could get to know him. So I don't even really know what military life is like. I'm seriously perplexed as to why this interest keeps popping up.

I really have no interest in seeing any action. In fact I would try my hardest to pick the safest branch of the military possible, without having to work in family medicine. Nothing in the world could be worse that working family medicine.

When I think about the areas of medicine I'm interested in (Critical Care, ER, Hospitalist) it might make some sense. I really only want to see sick patients. I want to treat people that actually need medical attention. Clearly in the military you would be seeing this. I don't have a huge reserve for seeing patients that just like to bitch and moan and just like the idea of being sick, as opposed to wanting to know how to get better.

I'm definitely not going to rush into anything. How about we wait until a graduate and pass the PANCE. We'll see what kind of job offers I get and if I'm doing anything with my life.


I just did my neuro physical exam practical. It overall went fine. I think it's amazing how strictly we're graded on Barbara Bate's method. For instance, to test for light touch I lightly touched my patient with my hammer. I got points off because a hammer isn't considered light. Last time I checked the hammer isn't exerting a force on its own. The pressure I supply determines whether it's light or not. But alas, I got point off for that.

There are some things we never have to perform and just need to describe such as taking femoral pulse, creamasteric reflex and anal wink reflex. They will give me full credit for describing how to do the test, but when I forget a paper clip I get no credit for describing how to perform 2-point discrimination perfectly. I guess the joke is on them since I have never successfully found a femoral pulse, yet the grade says I have.

Vent over. Be present. Be the Buddha.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Tonight a girl in my class was getting hit on by a guy she didn't want
anything to do with. I showed up at the bar and she told the guy she
was with me from across the room. He promptly left her alone. I'm the

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Friday, April 09, 2010

Out Gay'd

My straight guy friend are in and intense conversation about American
idol. I'm just staring with a look of disbelief. I can never get shit
for watching project runway ever again.

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Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Class Etiquette

People in class like to get into groups and split up lecture topics to write study guides for. Someone people freely hand out their study guides to whomever wants them, regardless of getting something back. Others don't like people leeching off their work unless they're getting something in return. If you work in a study group don't hand out the notes that you receive from other people in the group. It just creates tension within the group.

I personally don't take part in any of these groups. I don't like being on a deadline and being held to other people's crazy studying standards. I've never even look at the Course Objectives, let alone create a comprehensive study guide for them. I also NEVER ask for study guides from people and rarely accept them when offered. There are a couple of times when I accept them because I'll offend someone if I don't. I rarely use these guides since 1. I don't trust most people in my class, 2. They are so overly in depth that I find them impractical.

I like that I still have a little House left in me.

Hmmm. Blogging from my phone. This should be interesting....

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Speaking of Anonymity

I was just asked by the PA Professional magazine to give a quote on the pro's and con's of blogging anonymously and why I choose it. That's pretty neat.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Anonymity Compromised!

I try to keep this website anonymous. It doesn't help when you accidentally send out two e-mails using your blogging address to people who know you. Damn you Apple Mail! You can't say that it's from Personal e-mail, but then send it through Blogger e-mail. That's not cool.


Dearest Pharmacology Professor,
I love you. You're wonderful. And everyone agrees that you have the most smoking body post-2 children ever. I feel proficient at diabetes medications and will correct every patient's blood glucose levels that I meet. I will become a diabetes managing animal because of you.

Please don't tell anyone about my blog!


I think there is a greater likelihood of her not searching my address name and finding this site, but lets hope I don't need to self-destruct this site's ass. Not like I really write anything to scandalous anyway. My grandmother has more to lose at this point than I do.

Sunday, April 04, 2010


For some reason I was talking to my grandmother about weight loss methods. I mentioned the pill Alli and how it works. I half heartedly suggested that my overweight uncle should give it a try, since obviously the diet he's perpetually starting "tomorrow" isn't cutting it. And that clearly he's letting himself cheat more than he should be.

Today my grandmother started asking me all these questions about Alli again. Would it be considered a supplement, vitamin, etc? Where would one find it? How do you spell it? As she asked all this I was assuming she was thinking about buying it for my uncle, but I decided to confirm this. NOPE. She wants to use it herself.

For those of you would don't know how Alli works: dietary fat is blocked from being absorbed and is excreted with feces. This can often lead to oily (read as: explosive) bowel movements, increased frequency, etc. It's really more of a behavioral modification tool. It's to get people to stop eating too much fat because otherwise they're going to shit their brains out.

I never meant to suggest this to my grandmother. I had no idea she would consider this for herself. I should have known better. I'm trying to think of a way to tell her not to do this. If she was one of my patients I wouldn't have an issue with this, but when it's my grandmother I feel condescending. I think I'm just going to be a straight shooter with her and tell her the gory details. I have told her the possible side effects, but I don't think she's following me. She has a hard time following me on most things.

What a literally shitty situation.