Monthly Archives: April 2011

Unintended Consequences

Seven weeks until exams. Naturally it is time for me to bemoan my general lack of follow-through, effective note-taking, organisation skills, etc etc. Doesn’t matter. I have a plan. I just need to enact it.

I’ve just had a week of ‘break’, and I must have needed it, because aside from some minor reading, and some major planning, I haven’t actually done a whole heap of actual work work. I’ve just enjoyed going to bed early, getting up late, and not having to be in the hospital five days a week.

Sadly, the chunk missing from my finger prevented me from traveling anywhere interesting this week, which has had the unfortunate unintended consequence of me both missing a wedding reception and being forced to have my hair cut in Tinytown.

When I say ‘cut’, I guess what I really mean is ‘hacked at’.

Note to all aspiring Hair Artistes: Unless a person attends your Salon-Like Establishment for the sole express purpose of having their head shaved, the presence of a cowlick on their frontal hairline (ie fringe) does not in any way entitle you to use CLIPPERS to remove all evidence of said cowlick.

When I say ‘remove all evidence’, I guess what I really mean is ‘leave unsightly salt-and-pepper stubble’.

Thus blighted by a finger wrapped to resemble a Redhead matchstick and some kind of punk-meets-pumice-stone jailbird mop on my head, tomorrow I shall commence my last rotation of Phase Two: General Medicine.

I’m overcome by a deep desire to wear a beanie, long white gloves and dark glasses. And maybe a jumpsuit for good measure.

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Surgery II: That II Looks Like a Razor

Poor surgery. I absolutely failed to write a single word about this rotation, though I enjoyed it and seem to have learned a great deal.

My first hospital rotation was in Vascular Surgery last year, and the most pleasant memory I have from that rotation was a warm custard danish I managed to collect at a pre-dawn meeting.

And so it was with a certain amount of dread that I approached General Surgery, though I had heard great things about the surgical consultants and the anaesthetics team in Tinytown Hospital.

Sure enough, the team was great, the surgeons and anaesthetists keen to teach, the patients interesting, and in general I seem to have avoided doing anything ridiculous. I even managed to cannulate someone.

While I spent a lot of time in the operating theatre this time around, I somehow managed not to scrub in at all.

In the first week or so my non-scrubbing was down to a graze on my wrist which seemed to have cultivated an infection which triggered disturbing olfactory memories of MRSA. Then in the last week of the rotation I sliced off a sizeable chunk of my finger in an incident involving a car key, a pair of socks and a safety razor. Surprisingly, MacGyver was not present at the time.

Had MacGyver been in attendance, he probably could have saved me from submitting my assignment half an hour late by occluding my peripheral arteries for me, allowing me to type with one hand rather than one elbow. Expect to hear the story of “How I Failed My Personal Reflection”.

If you’re prone to fainting, please lie down for a moment, because I feel the need to tell you that after I finished typing with my elbow and a vague seal had formed over the wound, I noticed that it smelled like egg white.

I don’t know why I didn’t scrub into surgery in the intervening two-three weeks, maybe it had something to do with an unconscious yet disturbing habit of sniffing at wounds.

Doesn’t matter. I liked surgery and it seems to have liked me. No career plan changes though. Nobody loves a one-eyed surgeon, no matter how good she smells.

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An Unexpected Email

Dear Mum,
Thanks for your offer of KD Lang concert tickets ad an early Christmas gift. I’m just not that big a fan. What I’d really like right now though is an Epilady (TM).
Mwah, etc,

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