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Care of the Medical Patient Week 5

Where did this block go? I feel like we only started it 2 seconds a go.

Monday

We had planned to go in and attend a ward round with one of the Warwick MVP lecturers today. V is a lecturer most people want to get into clinics with, but we found he does a ward round on Ravenclaw Common Room every Monday, so naturally we wanted to go. I was looking forward to it as the Ravenclaw common room is a mixed ward that takes patients from A&E etc so there was going to be a lot of variety.

We were heading up to the ward and wouldn’t you guess, the two students who we bumped into trying to get into Gastro Clinic the other day, who were also going to the same ward, to shadow V. Why we don’t co-ordinate these things I have no idea……

It was fine though as they graciously gave way to us, and we hung around for V to show up, and hung around , and hung around. We eventually ended up bleeping V and turns out he was helping the finalists OSLERS. A bit rude of the finalists taking V away like that 😉

We ended up going for a wander to the Neuro ward (more like I dragged K there) and low and behold, a familiar face was there from second year in the form of a doc who used to do great teaching with us. Relieved, we decided to say, and we were in time for the ward round. Which did surprise me a bit as it was 9:40 by this point.

I could get used to DGH life.

We actually got such a good morning which was brilliant as this was something we were not expecting. The consultant was engaging with us and was teaching us with every single patient. I really enjoyed just being there. Everyone was there because of something that had gone wrong with their nervous system, and I was so there for it.

There were a couple of conditions that I had only read about in textbooks so I was loving the day for learning and being exposed to a speciality I have been DYING to see since day one.

We finished up chatting to a patient who had a really rare presentation that K NAILED whereas I had not a clue what may be going on.

***SPOLIER ALERT FOR MY YEAR GROUP*** (not that anyone reads this)

We ran and grabbed lunch, so we were in time for the afternoon COMET. Thankfully, this one was NOT on palliative care but on one which we all know about. Covid-19. That sneaky thing had managed to make its own COMET, and I was so here for it. Finally, back in my comfort zone and doing the logical side of medicine.

We had an A-E station of a critically ill COVID-19 patient, an ABG station (my brain has never had to work so hard) and a ventilation technique station which I relied mostly on my googling during COVID-19 to answer.

I know I still struggle, but hopefully , a bit of time and more experience will help.

After, I had to get back quickly as I had JASME chats which I was hosting. I hate hate hosting because , well, social skills, but it was a fantastic discussion today, and it’s nice to have a fully engaged panel.

After, I pretty much slept as it had been a long day. I swear my stamina is dismal at the moment.

Tuesday

Today we decided to go for our last morning on CCU which we were gutted about. We really like this ward and have come to know the doctors really well. Ok, K was secretly hoping one of the CEF’s would be there (they were not) and I was hoping to catch Dr V (who was also not about). Instead, we spent the morning semi blending into the background whilst the consultant grilled the docs in front of us.

However, we did have a lovely patient who we began to examine before the ward round cut in but during the round he came and chased us to show us more of his signs and to tell us more about his medical history. That was a first for us ! He also had a TEXTBOOK heart murmur so at least we got to see something useful.

We went to the Neuro MDT at 11:00 and low and behold, the same two people who we bumped into yesterday were there AGAIN. Honestly, same page thinking.

It was OK though because the consultant was lovely, so we were all there (huge room so plenty of space for social distancing) and we sat there and watched the MDT for three patients. After which the consultant paused and told us to go.

Honestly, in AWE of this guy. Recognizing we didn’t need to see 20 patients being talked about and that we had got all the use out of the MDT? Perfect.

K and I decided to call it a day there. We did have a hunt round our other ward for a blood (which there normally is) but nothing came up. Hence, we ran off to enjoy the weirdly good weather.

Wednesday

Up early today as we finally have Dr N’s clinic booked in. Which of course started at 8:30, I was pretty happy to get up though as I was looking forward to going over the endo side of medicine. Something we have hardly been able to touch.

It ended up being a bit less Endo and more Philosophy and calming us down about finals (something I needed more than K) but that didn’t really matter. I actually enjoyed the break and we began chatting about how technology in medicine is moving and what the future may look like. The finalists had just sat their OSLERS so we were also chatting about the layout of that and what to expect.

Another early finish that day. K and I have been in every day this block, so we are trying to slow things down this week, so we get some sort of rest for Surgery. We did end up driving over to Warwick though as we both wanted a practise before Monday during rush hour. I actually really enjoy the drive. I’ll have to go over to old Warwick if I finish early one day just to soak up the town that the uni is named after (and situated nowhere near).

Thursday

Our last day! Well, unofficial last day, but we have decided to give ourselves the last day off. Today we had a booked in palliative care experience morning which I had been slightly dreading since the fateful COMET.

However, it turned out to be a good morning. We started off linked on to the MDT via a tablet and then got to shadow nurses as they went to see the patients they were looking after in the hospital.

I got to go back and see one of the patients on the ward who I had met before in a MDT meeting. They were struggling to get them to feed, so I sort of took it on myself to try and have a go myself. I did everything, hand them the spoon, put the bowl under their nose so they could smell the food. I even went on the hunt for biscuits and cakes just in case they took their fancy. Nothing. I think between us all, we had tried everything except pick the food up and physically put it in their mouth, which is kinda the definition of torture. They were not refusing food for a palliative reason but due to dementia so it more of encouragement rather than just leaving the food in the hope they might eat it.

I am surprised about how much I enjoyed that. I wish I could have seen others but K and I are both shattered so I think we were running out of charge by lunch. That day we also had to do the end of block admin so we handed back our keys and had our last lunch and ice cream. I think I should have a loyalty card for that ice cream bar. At least my bank is going to be slightly happier now and hopefully my waistline will start to shrink a bit.

But it is good ice cream.

Friday

I wish I could say I had a lie in. I WISH. Instead, I dragged myself out of bed much earlier than I would have liked to and headed over to the big teaching hospital for an MRI of my slowly “getting to the point where I want to chop it off” hip.

It has been playing up a lot. Meds don’t help it and physio has not helped (I think it has made it worse) so we decided to give it a scan to see what was going on. So, here I was 7:30am, in a hospital.

Even though I had planned my clothes to have no metal in them, it still was terrifying being loaded into the machine. Just in case you haven’t realized by now, I have quite bad anxiety so all I could think about was being glued to the machine because I had forgotten one bit of metal.

However, I didn’t get sucked into a lifetime of chilling in the MRI machine and spent half an hour getting scanned. I always forget how small the openings are for MRI machines, so I was a bit panicky when I got loaded in but after a while it was OK and I had a nap.

They also scanned my knees (which is also great because they are stuffed up too – thanks mum for making me grow up dancing which I think has shot my knees) and I got to take a peek at the scan. They showed me very quickly the images, but I was not looking too hard at them because if I miss read them and thought I had seen something, I will be worrying about it for the rest of the time till I have my next appointment. However, it was pretty dam cool seeing my own hip and knee joints.

I treated myself to some M&S croissants (glared at the colin cake) and got myself back home for meetings.

The first was with a rep from Elsevier as I was being inducted into the ambassador programme. The best part about it was I DON’T HAVE TO DO ANY PLUGGING.

I am so over being a rep for a place and having to plug everything onto my uni Facebook pages because I know it annoys people and people don’t read it. However, this programme sounds amazing and I can’t wait to get involved.

I also had one final meeting which was my end of block sign off. Despite me sending the forms about 6 times however, nothing got through to Dr V so it was an awkward 10 minutes.

We then get to the best part of the day. Pizza. We haven’t seen the two gals who we used to travel with EVERY DAY since November so we arranged to meet up and catch up on all the car stories we had missed.

What a pretty good way to end the block …….