Hello everyone, I hope you are all well! I am so excited to finally start off this series of *Rotation Reviews*. 🥳🥳🥳 After I finish each core rotation of my third year, I wanted to write a review about it and what I learned from it. That way it is fresh in my head and in case any of you had any questions about what it was like, I would have it all here.
I started my elective about two weeks ago and man, did I learn a lot. I was so nervous when I started because this was my first rotation ever. What were they going to expect from me? What if the residents were mean? What if I did not have the skills to do well on this?
I am going to break down how the rotation was in different sections so read ahead:
The Tasks: I worked in an outpatient clinic at the internal med unit from 8am-4pm with another medical student and my tasks included working with a resident, accessing EPIC for patient information, performing patient interviews, and their physical exams. Afterward, I would have to present my patient to an attending using the SOAP format. Then I would be evaluated by my resident and attending based on my performance. In the beginning, I struggled with doing this. If you read my STEP experience, the last time I did any type of patient interview was in March…3 months earlier. So it was definitely a learning curve. I would pretty much shadow the resident and see how they would do the interview/present and slowly started learning from there. I had to make sure that I did not miss out on any information when presenting and to think outside of what was presented to me in order to provide the best care for the patient. The patient interviews were not too bad in my opinion, however, I struggled and still struggle with presenting the patients to the attendings. I would get scared and forget certain parts, even though I had just prepared for it in my head a couple minutes prior. Some of the attendings were nice about it and helped me while some were looking at me like I had two heads lol. 😅
The Subjects: This rotation was a general internal medicine elective meaning that I would be seeing cases related to it. I saw cases of back pain, diabetes, HTN, cardiac dysfunction, mental health disorders, and abdominal pain, to name a few. Internal med is one of those specialties where what you learn in medical school really applies to the patients. It was so nice to see that I knew more than I thought and how I could even explain the pathophysiology of a disease, like diabetes, to someone.
Didactics: There wasn’t necessarily didactics (classes) with this rotation because it was an elective. However, the residents had 30-minute courses at 7:30 am and they decided that we medical students should go as well 😩. These sessions were not too bad and the stuff I learned in step was pretty relevant. It was not hard to imagine that I was a resident and overall I really liked how they included us in those sessions.
Environment: I really loved the environment at this clinic! It was new and there were other specialties in the building such as peds, ob/gyn, family med, pharmacy, and of course, internal med. The staff were really friendly and welcomed me to the team. The residents were super nice and there was even a hijabi one! I paired myself with her on most days because I just loved her and because it was nice and comforting to have another Muslim there. The break room was so nice and there was even a hot chocolate machine, ok?! 😎😎😎 I will definitely miss the people there and it’s crazy how even though I spent two weeks there, it felt like I was there for a minute.
Pros: Everything I said above. I loved the environment so much, it was just so great! Also the med student I was working alongside with was pretty nice so that was a huge plus.
Cons: This rotation was chill but I am not a huge fan of the outpatient clinic. So many appointments we cancelled so sometimes I would just be waiting at the computers until someone came. The complaints started to morph together and I was confused when I was seeing a case about leg swelling when I had just seen another one with that complaint prior to that. Again? Diabetes and HTN were very common so everyone reading this should watch your sugars and check your BP cause you never know. Also, this is personal, but I live an hour away from the clinic so I was not getting sleep at all. I was waking up by the crack of dawn and coming home around 6 pm. 😣😣😣 Boy was I tired. The only nice days were Tuesdays because I would get to leave early at 12 pm. Other than that, I was fighting to keep my eyes open during the last couple of days.
Overall: I truly did enjoy this rotation and it was a great way to get my foot into the door for future rotations. I learned so much during these last two weeks and I hope it sets the foundation for me to learn other things.
Ranking: I would give this rotation 8.5/10 based on what I said above. This is subject to change as I do more rotations. Who knows I might give this a 10 later on? But I am so glad I started with this and I hope that the rotations I have after are just as nice as this one.
That’s it for this rotation review. Be on the lookout for the next one! Have a safe summer everyone 😊😊😊