Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Psychiatry of Gingerbread

Gee, Stephanie is posting again...

That means one or more events listed below occurred:
1) She has time (this is one is the Big Bang of reasons)
2) She had an interesting thought (preferably medically related)
3) She had an interesting experience (preferably out-of-body)
4) She was bored (the ugly truth)
5) AN EXAM IS OVER (the real reason for this post)

After resisting for months, I finally began studying at the library to prevent the discomfiture rendered by the last cardiovascular exam (see first post). The suffering was not without certain bright spots of hope -- a friend baked pumpkin pie and it was so nice running out of the library and into the home of a person with fresh-baked pie and whipped cream. :)

Our cardiovascular exam was this past Monday, and it is to UCSF's credit that we get the results back by around 5 p.m. the same day. For those of you who are curious, 70% is the cut-off for passing. UCSF medical school is pass-fail during the first two years, and honors-pass-fail during the third and fourth years. This is how the popular equation "P=MD" arises.

The afternoon after our test was spent with some dear friends from medical school. We embarked on a giant gingerbread cookie project. In an attempt to make as many gingerbread cookies from scratch as possible, we baked for hours and rolled mountains of dough. Several hours later, we had produced about 8 batches of cookies and we were wiped out (see picture above). At first, we thought that it was all fun and games and delighted in mixing and dusting the french rolling pin with flour and using the crowd-pleasing cookie cutters. By the end of the evening, we were like disgruntled elves working in the Keebler tree and we were sick of gingerbread. :)

Having finished our cardiovascular block, we have three days of "mini-rotations" at different wards affiliated with UCSF before cutting loose for Christmas break. Some students have rotations at the trauma wards of Emergency Rooms or shifts in OB-GYN, but most students have assignments to shadow medical teams doing internal medicine, surgery, neurology, pediatrics. What was my assignment? Psychiatry. Although psychiatry is not an interest of mine, I was willing to give the experience a chance.

This is what people call a cliff-hanger.

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