Tag Archives: atalanta

Confessions of a neurotic medical student

I’ve been using the word “neurotic” an awful lot lately.  And no, I’m not going to quote the Oxford Dictionary  and tell you what it means like this is a grade 10 English project.  That’s what bloody Google is for.

Anyway.  It led me to think, I’m pretty neurotic.  I worry about a lot of stuff.  Some of it seems pretty reasonable, like passing the comprehensive exam at the end of this year, eventually seeing an optic disc with an opthalmascope, not killing anyone during my clerkship years… But a lot of it is pretty ridiculous.  A list of my favourite worries and cares are below for your enjoyment and derision:

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Fretting and fear

No post last week.  Hawai’i takes precedence over silly, trifle-ish things like blogging.  Case in point:

So yes.  It’s been nice.  But now we’re back to neurology.  Cranial nerves, anyone? [gag me]

I had a bit of a revelation during a clinical skills session recently; I didn’t just pick a challenging or difficult career, I picked a terrifying one.  At least, sometimes.

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In med school, we occasionally talk about patients whose symptoms or disorder we can’t explain.  Often times, it comes in the context of the “difficult patient” or “factitious disorders.”  In both cases, there’s this subtle, inward eye-rolling by both the teachers and the students.  Difficult patients are just a part of life.  And some people just make stuff up.  Sigh.  Ah well.

It’s quite a striking difference from the normally top-notch empaths that fill the room.  Everyone in that class can identify with the struggle to control high blood pressure or diabetes.  But one mention of conversion disorder or a patient who wants an MRI for having a “fuzzy feeling” in their head… people tune out.

I don’t know if I can change any of that with this story, but here goes.

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Awesome words: medical edition (part III)

(Other awesome words: part I + part II)

It’s that time again!  The end of musculoskeletal block (MSK) brings with it a new hash of fantastic terminology. (And the end of TBL, rejoice!) Plus blogging is a great way to take your mind off numbingly obvious bone physiology, right?

I’m also happy to say that this little series of posts is the most popular of the blog – every week I get a ton of referrals from Google, etc. spitting out my site as people search for “awesome words.”  So if you’re a med noob and don’t know how the hell you got here, I wave excitedly in your general direction.

Enjoy, and be sure to add your own in the comments!

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“… he who studies medicine without patients does not go to sea at all.”

My class was recently asked to write a short piece on how a patient encounter has changed how we’ll practice medicine someday.  We had a couple of different topics, but one resonanted with me – “Reflect an instance where a patient has brought you a new understanding of how disease impacts patients’ everyday lives.”

At first, I’d thought of writing something rather pedestrian – how someone with diabetic foot has to keep track of their foot health, how someone with a C-spine injury deals with everyday activities like eating or dressing… Don’t get me wrong, I’m not minimizing daily challenges like those, they just seemed to be what the question was leading towards.

Then I thought of a lady I’d met.  She really did change how I viewed both myself as a healer and my patient as a partner and teacher.  I’ve rewritten my response below – and if you steal material from it to complete your assignment, God help me, I WILL SET MY NINJAS ON YOU.

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The BUILD – Constructing the LEGO Imperial Shuttle

I’m going to try my hand at a photo blog this week, yay! <dodges flying vegetables>  Basically, I’ve been documenting one of the geekiest challenges I’ve yet attempted in my reasonably short lifetime and I’d like to share that with all of you.  (Knowing, of course, that most people, upon reading the word “LEGO,” will roll their eyes and possibly throw whatever they were holding.)

For the unfortunate few who already know all about it, I apologize as I gloat over the enormity of the Imperial Shuttle.  Not only does it have twin cannons both fore and aft, double turrets on both wings, an accessible cockpit, and wings movable from landing to flight position… but it also looks super sexy in my living room.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.  This set deserves a proper introduction.  So without further ado-do, Atalanta Geekery Ltd. proudly presents THE BUILD. Continue reading


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New Christmas album up on YouTube!

Hey y’all.  So the Christmas holidays are not yet completed, so my get-up-and-go-write-a-blog-entry has not yet returned.  Instead, imma link you all to my new album (I use that term in the loosiest way possible).  Plus it’s a great excuse to plug art in medicine – just because I’m going to be a doctor someday doesn’t mean I have to give up music and being a diva.

I’m only putting up 3 of the 6 tracks this year because A) I’m lazy, B) it takes forever to upload in 1080p, and C) they’re more depressing than the 3 I uploaded.  So TADA:

Carol of the Bells:  This one goes out to my girls, yo.  More specifically, the 3 wonderful ladies who are largely responsible for the overwhelming success of the Winter Concert this year.

Lucky:  After years and years of begging, pleading, and otherwise embarassing myself, my little bro finally agreed to sing a duet with me.  Jason Mraz?  Colbie Callait?  Eat your heart out.

Over the Rainbow:  I’ve done this one a couple of times, most recently at World AIDS Day, but I figured I should record it properly this year with my super lame microphone.

Thanks for listening!

 – Atalanta

Photo courtesy of: suphakit73 | FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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