(Didn't take any pics during peds, so here is a pic with me and one of my most favorite little humans, my baby cousin Choyce <3 )
We made it. 3rd year ended rather smoothly and a little sickly with the babies, kids, tweens, teens and young adults who are probably too old to still be going to their pediatrician, but I won't judge. Fun fact, when I first decided I wanted to be a doctor way back in middle/high school, I thought I would become a pediatrician. In fact, I still felt that way through college and my actual first real clinical experience was a summer job as a clinical assistant in a Pediatrics office. I loved working in that office, but as I continued on my premed path and was exposed to different patient populations, I recognized that I loved all of medicine and not just kids.
That being said, like psychiatry, I knew that Peds was a field that I would love for a clerkship but not a career. I have many friends who are pediatricians and I have friends who are going to be pediatricians, and they are literally some of the most amazing people I know. Despite dealing with some of the most heartbreaking scenarios in medicine, they are able to empathize, heal, treat and remain incredibly strong and level headed throughout it all and I am in constant awe of them. They are both able to cry and also remain stoic when the situation calls for it, and they are also the number one physician advocators for their patients in probably all of medicine. Also they have to deal with parents, so there is that. I am amazed by them and I had already known that despite as much as I absolutely love kids, it was not something I could do for the long haul.
Nevertheless, I had a fantastic 6 weeks of pediatrics. My office was 93% Spanish speaking which I actually loved because although my moderate fluency had returned to what it was back in college by purely living in South Florida, I still desired that full level of immersion to help me become confidently fluent. Sadly, although I was FULLY immersed, I am not confidently fluent yet, but I did have a few of my patients think I was Latina while I was there, so I would say that was a WIN. My doctors were both fantastic in both their patient rapport and teaching, and I was able to do everything from the full patient visits to the lab draws to giving shots...the whole nine yards. The one thing I really do love about Pediatrics is that you truly see a tremendous diversity in your patients purely from the age perspective. Adults can be more or less the same from the ages of 30-50, but kids from the ages of 0-20 are legitimately the complete opposite. The variability of being in Peds keeps you on your toes because although your day during the winter is mainly filled with URIs, Strep and/or the flu and during the summer it is filled with school physical exams, each day you will still have at least one or two cases that are just perplexing and really make you think. I was fortunate to see a fair amount of pathology that I really only thought existed in textbooks and because one of my doctors has literally been working for over 40 years, he would teach me so many unique things that you literally only learn after practicing for 40 years. Also working with a predominantly hispanic population was such a humbling experience. I think I will eventually write a post about gratitude in medicine and how that affects your training, but I had yet to have experienced such a gracious and grateful patient population. I do think that the familial environment of my office also plays a role in that, but the amount of hugs, kisses and "Gracias Doctora" that I received during my rotation made going into the office every day easy.
I did not use pretest and I still did really well on this shelf, but I heard it is a really great resource for this shelf if you are looking for additional questions or you want to go into Pediatrics. Amazon Link for YA.
Your Dedicated Step 2 CK Book (MTB, First Aid, Step Up to CK)
Read the Pediatrics chapter. Read the MSK chapter. Read the section on Child Psychiatry.
So, apparently you can also order a laminated pocket card version for FREE of this schedule but when I tried to do it a few months ago, they were out/on back order. It's definitely worth while to see if they have them available yet but you can also just print it out yourself and have them laminated and made up all purty. ^^^ Issa hyperlink.
1) As always, even if you do not want to go into pediatrics, learn as much as you can because you will inevitably have a friend or family member call you up and ask you about their sick kid.
2) Keep stickers and snacks in your white coat pockets. Thank me later.
3) Vaccine schedule! Learn it for LIFE. It is hard but once you know it, you're good. See above in the resource section for a link to the official CDC version.
4) Little people are NOT just small versions of big people. They are honestly completely different not only when it comes to diseases but also when it comes to medication dosages amongst many other things. Side note: calculating dosages might be the #1 reason I would never go into peds-- you think I am kidding but I am completely serious.
5) Have fun, Try to not get sick- You will likely get sick but you will also have a ton of fun. Kids are fun. Have fun with the kids.
Up Next: I HAVE NO IDEA.
Just kidding, I went to my first medical conference so I'll talk about ways to prepare for conferences! Maybe I will also eventually give some culminating words about third year but you should definitely understand that I am now one month into 4th year so I am WAY past that. ;-) I have other topics on deck but you'll have to stay tuned. Tell all yo friends!