I write to you in the familiar situation of status-post-too-long-accidental-nap. This nap was supposed to be a quick refresher after a long, slow day. Tucked in at 5:30. Woke up at 7. Yikes.
So, though my first week of peds surgery kind of dominated my spirit, God heard my pleas and sent me a fourth-year med student. He started on service the second week, and then the third and final week we got another third-year med student. Oh what a difference company makes! Someone to look at when you feel utterly. ashamed. and. uneducated/inept. Someone to provide a "student presence" when you need to run to the bathroom/eat lunch/sit/other such human things. I am so grateful for these guys who came on service.
After I recovered from my illness, I decided to get all of my on-call experiences out of the way. As much as I feel like I dread being on-call, I always learn SO much and always feel SO much more comfortable in my working environment after being there for a 24 hour period. I regret that I can't recap all the details of my experiences on peds surgery, but needless to say I got to see LOTS of cool-to-see/unfortunate-for-the-patient conditions and operations.
Highlights of Peds Surgery: free limitless soft drinks w/ pellet ice at every nurse's station, patients who would cutely (not creepishly) grab your finger during rounds, plenty of exams on patients who were "resting comfortably in no apparent distress" aka sleeping and did not wake during check-up's, working with some of the brightest surgeons in the field (as I learned that peds surgery is a VERY competitive fellowship, UAB's program attracting many internationally competitive residents), getting to learn my way around children's hospital before my general peds rotation.
Low points of Peds: diagnosing kids with horrible tumors and other conditions that you know are going to drastically change the quality of the rest of their lives, getting relentlessly (and i mean RELENTLESSLY) pimped (see previous entry for definition) on EVERYTHING including the minutiae of classic rock music...DAILY, scrub/circulating nurses with personal vendettas against yours truly, the hours (4:30am - sometimes 6:30pm = not cool), CRAZY mothers/lazy parents.
All in all, I really ended up enjoying my time on their service. The longer I worked with the surgeons, the more they trusted me, and therefore the more they let me do (don't worry -- babies were still getting the best care) and see during operations. The residents, fellows, and attendings were very encouraging toward the end of my time there, and, as much as I hated the pimping, it forced me to study EVERY DAY. And so, I learned a lot as a result.
OK so I'm going to sleep now, but I must say...So far, cardiovascular surgery rotation is disorganized and full of surgical physician assistants, nursing first-assists, and PA students (all sorts of allied health professional peeps) to climb over in order to actually SEE the surgeries, BUT...if you can convince anesthesia to let you stand at the head of the bed and look over the curtain...YOU CAN SEE THE BEAUTIFUL OPERATIVE THEATRE THAT IS CV SURGERY. And, of course, the heart. Personal testimony: it's beautiful. Superior to other organs (although infant stomach's are pretty beautiful, too).
Next update will come sooner, I promise :)