Sunday, March 11, 2012

Professionalism and a Fifth of Beethoven


I am sick of the word 'professionalism.' Unfortunately for me, this is the favorite word of the people in the long white coats. I didn't begin disliking it until medical school. I knew I was going to be a professional doctor - as opposed to an unprofessional? doctor. The idea is silly. I know they are referring to the proper way in which doctors carry themselves. What they mean is, "Don't act like banshees when potential donors come visit the school. You are our little goldfish - look pretty and don't get in the way. That way, we get more money, you get better stuff, and we'll all be happy." I'd much prefer the 30 seconds of honesty to the hours of lectures - they'd save time and get the same results.

The strange part is, if I took my complaints to the administration about the length of time dedicated to professionalism lectures, it would be complaining and unprofessional. If I were to use a passive-aggressive blog post to complain, I would not be actively confronting the problems I see which is unprofessional behavior. If I were to say nothing, then I'd too afraid to call the emperor naked which I'm sure is somehow unprofessional. Joseph Heller himself couldn't have come up with a better quandary.

We've been doing neuro for a week and a half and we have our first test on Friday - a great way to kick off spring break. About 70% of the test is going to be neuroanatomy and it is coming back to me. The advantage of having taken it before is that I understand the importance of tract decussations (nerves crossing over to the other side of the body) and how that helps localize lesions. Everyone else gets to wikipedia what a decussation is. It's times like these when a gunner like myself should wrongify or obscure the entries of the neuro tracts within wikipedia to give myself an advantage.

Dr. B was a fantastic teacher and I learned quite a bit from him, but there's a big difference between having taken it and remembering all of it. I still put in long hours and I'm only slightly better off than the rest of the class. In fact, if we were all patients in the hospital, you might say that I'm the healthiest person in the ICU. We'll see how thing go on test day.


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