You've completed ICM I & II. Now it's time to put your clinical skills into practice. The third year required Surgery requires that you write-up a minimum of three (3) complete history and physicals on patients you encounter during the clerkship. It is important that you learn to make a diagnosis and compile a reasonable and justifiable differential diagnosis with a diagnostic/treatment plan in these workups. The faculty are here to assist you in developing these important skills. Patients will usually be assigned in such a way as to vary the particular clinical problems and insure maximum exposure to a variety of disease processes.
You will reinforce your patient evaluation and management skills by writing them up and reviewing them with the attending of record (first choice and preferable) or Chief Resident (second choice). High quality of workups and effective discussion of the primary clinical problem contribute to an attendings view of your clinical performance. These workups provide an opportunity for you to integrate knowledge and skills from the basic science years, other clinical clerkships, and the Introduction to Clinical Medicine courses. The workup format should be focused but complete. Your write-up should include a differential diagnosis, a plan for further workup, and a rational plan for treatment, giving an explanation for your thoughts. You will be expected to be completely familiar with each aspect of your patients' management. Evaluations and feedback are important to your clinical development. You should sit down with the attending to go over each write-up. These write-ups are turned in to the patient's attending of record who should read it and give you feedback. HINT: Make an appointment with the attending to get feedback.
View a sample patient write-up.
Learning to critique the medical literature is essential to your life-long learning in medicine. During this clerkship you will be asked to select an article relevant to the patient problem or disease process of your choice. You should then summarize the data from this paper (one paragraph) and critically evaluate its relevance and method of study (second paragraph). This critique should be no longer than one page. Select a faculty member and provide him/her with a copy of the article and your critique. You should meet with that faculty member and discuss the article and your evaluation.
The goals of the medical students and the faculty of the School of Medicine are one and the same: to get the best medical education possible while not ignoring overall health and happiness. Attention needs to be paid to both duty/work hours and personal time.
Work hours rules have been developed for residents, but similar rules have not been developed for medical students. There are obvious differences in terms of goals, reimbursement, and responsibilities between residents and students. Nonetheless, some guidelines for students apply.