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Fresh fry

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  1. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Arztin in Who Said Ec's Show Capability To Handle Workload?   
    Considering my post was a single line I am not sure where you read into it that I look at multiple ECs or specific ECs when I review files, I was intentionally sparse with details. 
     
    I simply look to see if the applicant has: 1) a life 2) can balance it with work. 
  2. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Arztin in Who Said Ec's Show Capability To Handle Workload?   
    As a reviewer I look at ECs to see if the candidate can balance work and life. There. Fact.
  3. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Wasteman in How Should I Get Ahead In High School?   
    Everyone else has said has been spot on, Bambi usually provides solid advice.
     
    Only thing I have to add is to make sure you actually want to do medicine. Use this time to explore other careers and talk with people who do them. People always ask about shadowing doctors and my opinion is it is beyond useless. You see only a few hours of the "fun stuff" without all of the behind the scenes crap. No one ever shadows a physician dictating for 2 hours at the end of the day, or writing referrals, or attending a sub-par conference so they can get their education credits. 
     
    Find out who you are, what you really like. Ask yourself the hard questions, ask yourself why you really really want to do this then ask yourself if there are better ways to get what you want. The deeper down this rabbit hole you get the harder it is to climb out.
     
    Its been touched on but to reiterate: stay away from cookie cutter activities. When I read these things and someone says they were on this and this charity, or volunteered here and here at this hospital I know that they are only going through the motions and trying to tell me what I want to hear. That makes me feel like I am being played and you are neither true to yourself or true to me. You can't fake real passion so find yours and run with it.
  4. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Wasteman in Who Said Ec's Show Capability To Handle Workload?   
    Considering my post was a single line I am not sure where you read into it that I look at multiple ECs or specific ECs when I review files, I was intentionally sparse with details. 
     
    I simply look to see if the applicant has: 1) a life 2) can balance it with work. 
  5. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Wasteman in Who Said Ec's Show Capability To Handle Workload?   
    As a reviewer I look at ECs to see if the candidate can balance work and life. There. Fact.
  6. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from palefire in If Medicine Really Worth It   
    I will bite because this is something that had been a central theme throughout med school for me.
     
    1) We would all like to think that people get into medicine for noble reasons, and when we are interviewing everyone plays the part. "I want to advance (insert random cause here) and be a role model" "I want to be at the forefront of human science and technology" "I want to cure (insert random disease here) that affected my second cousin twice removed". The reality is much different. From my experience people get into medicine for a varying combination of the following reasons: 
     
    1) Steady and secure job with great pay and portability
    2) Respect from society
    3) Respect from parents/girlfriend/boyfriend/best friend/high school guidance counselor who said you would never amount to anything
    4) Parents are forcing me
    5) I want a job where I think and don't get my hands dirty
    6) I like gross things and I want to cut into people
    7) I like power
    8) I want to do something that has meaning/purpose
    9) I want people to think I am smart
    10) I want to help people*
     
    * This is always the first thing that people say and it is always the first thing that goes by the wayside. Personally I think when people are forced to really examine this motive there isn't much depth to it. If you want to "help people" (and not you personally but people in general) why does it have to be medicine? Why not psychology, PT/OT, resp therapy, non-medical stuff like working for an NGO or social work. Everyone on this forum will say that this is their number one reason why they follow this path but I got to tell you when someone is on hour 22 of a 30 hour call shift and they are called to see a patient, or to make it a bit more relevant to you, when someone is in clinic and they are trying to get through 20-40 patients so they can pay the bills and keep the lights on, it is rarely the "desire to help people" that keeps them going. It is all the other things on the list, and most of the time it is all about the Benjamins. 
     
    Now this is coming from someone who has just been on a month of night shifts in a major city's ER, and I fully admit I am a bit burnt and bitter, but this is a longstanding trend I have observed. 
     
    Everyone comes into medical school thinking "I will be the one who is different, I am going to get through all this and stay true to my ideals and principles" yet I can only think of a handful of docs I have come across who I would safely say have maintained a noble perspective. Medschool and residency changes people and strips away the veneer of false motives. What comes out on the other side is usually not the ideal. Again this is not always the case.
     
    I remember a resident I met on a rotation when I was a 1st year med student. I thought she was the best person I had ever come across. Did a masters, big on refugee health care, big on women's health. She was in 1st year of residency. Took time to teach, took time to talk to every patient and make sure they understood everything, called families at home. Advance 3 years and I am on rotation and she is a senior resident. Total 180. 3 years of being perpetually tired, abused by patients and preceptors, and never leaving the hospital broke her. She was like every other surgical senior resident: hard as nails with zero patience for anything or anyone. It is something I am watching play out again in real time as my friends advance through residency. I distinctly recall mourning the day a close friend matched to gen surge because I knew she would be a different person on the other side and I am sad to say I already hate how bitter and jaded she has become 2 years in.
     
    I personally believe that everyone who gets into this wants to be good at it regardless of their motives. I think almost everyone wants to do the right thing in most situations. But I think that the system is broken and the weight of the world crushes most peoples idealism and the only thing that keeps them going is the more baser desires. The few who are the exceptions to the rule are truly remarkable people and if you ever come across one do all that you can to learn from them and keep them in your life. 
     
    2) Now with respect to your condition.
     
    Take your family doc for example. They have the shortest and easiest residencies. Family medicine usually attracts the more bubbly and idealistic students because it involves spending your day working with patients and their families. However, some pick family med because it is the easiest and most portable vocation. It is no secret that they don't get paid very well compared to other specialties, meaning if you want to make money you need to see as many patients as possible in a day. Most fee for service is set up on a 15 minute billing code. So they get paid X amount to see a patient for 15 minutes. If it is a complicated patient or there is something extra to be done they can charge extra (to the province) for things like a pap, or to remove stitches, etc. For most patients they can only charge the basic 15 minute rate. Working 8 hours a day means 32 patients if it works like clock work. To make any real money you need to see >40 patients in a day so some aren't getting their full 15 minutes. Others are going to take up more than their 15 and so that eats into the schedule too.
     
    So you come to the office with a complicated complaint related to something that requires a specialist. Your family doctor has a very basic knowledge of how to treat complex endocrine disorders, that is why we have endocrinologists. How long does it take for you to tell them what is wrong? How long to examine? How long to chart? Now you have a problem that they don't know a lot about and have to try to look stuff up, how much can you learn about a complex endocrinopathy in 15 minutes? in 5 minutes? Not enough to treat someone effectively. Your family doc is saying to themselves "I don't know how to treat this person, they have a specialist who knows, why are they coming to see me about something I can't fix? The specialist will know how what to do. Are they dying? No, they can wait to see their specialist". 
     
    Now you see your specialist, and this is the big disconnect between physicians and society. What you think is an emergency or urgent is not the same as what they do. You think "this is really affecting my life, I am suffering, I need help, why won't anyone help me?". Your specialist is thinking "I had 2 patients die yesterday on call, I have to get through 30 follow up appointments today, one of them is that woman who keeps coming to emerge in query thyroid storm, one of them is that guy whose blood sugar is through the roof and he keeps going into DKA and I am worried he will die this week, and one is that person with the hashimotos and the headaches whose family doc keeps sending them to me". From the endos standpoint you are the least sick person they will see that day and their therapeutic goals are not the same as yours. You want to be back to normal health, they want to do the best they can for you but primarily keep you alive.
     
    Its not the endos fault, there is just so many hours in the day and so many patients to see. Same for the family doc. Giving them the benefit of the doubt they are probably doing the best they can for you considering they only know so much and have so many other patients to see. I never give medical advice over the internet, and given that you have a family doc, an endocrinologist, and a plastic surgeon who are all qualified physicians it would be presumptuous of me to think they haven't considered a prolactinoma, but given your headaches I would be remiss to tell you that if you start having vision changes (tunnel vision) that you need to see someone and let them know about that new symptom.
     
    TLDR: If you want to help people you don't have to be a doctor. Most physicians want to do a good job and help you but their motives are not always 100% to "help people". There seems to be a communication breakdown about what your goals of health are and what can be done for you at the moment and you should discuss this at your next visit. 
     
    Good Luck
  7. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from 300343615 in What Do You Wish You'd Thought About When Selecting Your Specialty?   
    1) They keep a lot of things hidden from you as a med student which can make figuring it all out damn near impossible. As a student you don't see a lot of the politics or how things actually operate day to day. Most people try to present their specialties in a positive light, either because they want to attract good people to change it, or they are trying to convince themselves they made the right choice. It is rare that you get told the "real story". On a peds NICU elective I did, I had a great preceptor who told me straight not to get into this specialty. It is changing to mostly NPs and it is very hard dealing with parents and dying kids for an entire career. There is lots of controversy in the specialty around who should be resuscitated and there is a lot of factions and infighting between staff. Might be at just that location but he said it is pretty pervasive. 
     
    2) Actual commitment. Prior to residency my way of thinking was that 5 years was only a small part of my life and that the hard work would be worth the pay off. I didn't really care how hard the residency was and given how hard I have worked to get through undergrad and med, what was 5 more years? Living it is a totally different thing. 1 month in and I am already exhausted and looking for ways out (hopefully it passes). Surgical residencies aren't just slightly harder than others, they are monumentally more difficult. Just write off those 5 years in a very literal sense. Having kids and a partner makes this exceptionally difficult. Everything is a trade. Time with them, looking stupid on half day, studying for POS, studying for home service, spending time with kids, sleep. It is no wonder why people bail on surgical specialties and I admit I was naive to think I was above it and could just push through.
     
    3) I didn't pick medicine specifically because I didn't want to CaRMS twice. I have lots of friends who went that way and have not got the subspecialties they wanted. Going through CaRMS once is crappy enough, you don't know if you are going to get program you want or in the place that you want, now go through that again. I really like critical care, but there is no guarantee I could get there as it is very competitive. The alternative could be doing general medicine which to me is almost as bad, if not worse, than family med (for me). Going into medicine you really have to be prepared to accept any of the subspecialties.
     
    4) Jobs. There are entire threads on this page about if you should consider the job market when picking a specialty. The fact is things change rapidly in this country. It is a total crap shoot about where you could end up working and that is a reality our generation just has to accept. When it comes to jobs what i would warn is that if you want to be at a teaching hospital in a major city you are almost certainly going to need a) a masters PhD c) fellowship d) all 3. Add that on to a surgical residency and some of us just don't have enough time before the grave to get all that done. There is a major difference between academic and community medicine and in med school we only really get exposed to he academic side. 
     
    5) Baggage and portability. Where you can work is a big deal for some people and your ability to move is highly dependent on specialty. Most surgical specialties take up roots after getting a job and maybe only move once over the course of their career if at all. Fam docs on the other hand seem to change practices like some people change underwear and can traverse the country multiple times in a career. I ran into an old family doc of mine just yesterday on the ward. She is now doing hospitalist and is on her 5th job in the 10 year time I have known her. the more specialized you are the fewer places you can work at. If you are CV surgeon there is like 10 cities in Canada you can find a job for eg. In such a small world politics is everything and if you don't like where you are there really isn't much room to move.
     
    6) Patients. Surgeons see their patients for consult, surgery, and then maybe a couple times for follow up. Ob's will see a patient for 9 months. Fam docs and internists can be with the same people for life and emerge docs as little as 5 minutes (although there are a lot of frequent fliers). I guess it depends on how close you want to be with your patients and how much of a people person you are. Pathologists and radiologists rarely see their patients (when they are alive anyway). Just something to think about.
     
    There is lots more but that is a start.
  8. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Arztin in How Should I Get Ahead In High School?   
    Everyone else has said has been spot on, Bambi usually provides solid advice.
     
    Only thing I have to add is to make sure you actually want to do medicine. Use this time to explore other careers and talk with people who do them. People always ask about shadowing doctors and my opinion is it is beyond useless. You see only a few hours of the "fun stuff" without all of the behind the scenes crap. No one ever shadows a physician dictating for 2 hours at the end of the day, or writing referrals, or attending a sub-par conference so they can get their education credits. 
     
    Find out who you are, what you really like. Ask yourself the hard questions, ask yourself why you really really want to do this then ask yourself if there are better ways to get what you want. The deeper down this rabbit hole you get the harder it is to climb out.
     
    Its been touched on but to reiterate: stay away from cookie cutter activities. When I read these things and someone says they were on this and this charity, or volunteered here and here at this hospital I know that they are only going through the motions and trying to tell me what I want to hear. That makes me feel like I am being played and you are neither true to yourself or true to me. You can't fake real passion so find yours and run with it.
  9. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from pondare in Is It True Reference Letters Are Worth 20%? Concerned About Generic Letters...   
    To be 100% honest i can't speak with total certainty about U of T because I have never seen their published scores for reference letter grading. I can speak about other schools and would assume that U of T does not vary that much as it is the same applicant pool and same letters (OMSAS) that they are receiving. I would tend to think that U of T would put less emphasis on letters as they receive the most applications and are likely unable to grade them as thoroughly.
     
    Been doing this for many years and never came across someone who was held back by a letter, it is almost always 75% GPA, 10% MCAT, 14% ECs, 1% red flagged because they are a psycho. The letters almost always reflect the caliber of candidate. No matter how poorly or well written they are it won't make as much of a difference. The variability comes from who wrote the letter. So s PhD or masters supervisor has a much more powerful letter than an undergrad lab student or a professor from a course someone took. A university administrator trumps a minor league hockey coach. But again the differences are minor. 
     
    GL.
  10. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Lifeisawesome in Provide A Specific Example Of, And Describe, A Time Or Situation In Which You Demonstrated Resilience   
    If I was the one evaluating responses to this question I would be looking for:
     
    1) What the respondent thinks resilience is, a definition or very clear example would be ideal
     
    2) The example situation to qualify what they think is a stressful situation or trial that requires resilience. IE if they respond something along the lines of "one time my coach yelled at me but I took their advice and we won the game" I would think that they are naive and have had a pretty easy life versus "my dd lost his job and I needed to drop out for a few semesters to pay the bills but was able to go back and get a 4.0 while working full time". I should clarify that it probably doesn't matter how "tragic" or "severe" the situation is versus how the person perceives it and the impact it has on their life and how they navigate through it.
     
    3) Pragmatism. The one thing that sets people apart on their applications (IMHO) is realism. As soon as I read  some BS boilerplate standard premed answer I lose interest. Show some humility, show some honesty, and not in a humble brag way I'm talking real honest experience. "When I was picked on in high school I took it very hard, I was very depressed and I had very negative thoughts of myself. My grades suffered and that further added to my decreased sense of self worth". Here's where you can have two totally different narratives (tell me which one is better) 1) "but I managed to convince myself I was worth it and I persevered because I am a self starter and really talented" 2) "I sought help from my friends and counselling, it was a long difficult journey but with some assistance I gained new insight and I learned from that experience that it is OK to seek help and I should be on the look out to help others".
     
    4) What you learned and how you will do things differently to avoid the situation or to be able to bounce back quicker.
     
     
    GL  
  11. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from UFT2021 in Oop Gpa -File Review   
    Just apply

  12. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from ralk in Dry Lab Or Wet Lab   
    Dude, 100% serious here, do what you like. Research is such a grind it is a thousand times worse if you are not into it. Find something you like (or can tolerate). No one cares if it is wet or dry, if you publish or just do posters, it is all experience. I promise you that at this level it makes no difference.
     
    You can't live your life thinking about how it will look on paper. 
     
    GL
  13. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from UFT2021 in Provide A Specific Example Of, And Describe, A Time Or Situation In Which You Demonstrated Resilience   
    If I was the one evaluating responses to this question I would be looking for:
     
    1) What the respondent thinks resilience is, a definition or very clear example would be ideal
     
    2) The example situation to qualify what they think is a stressful situation or trial that requires resilience. IE if they respond something along the lines of "one time my coach yelled at me but I took their advice and we won the game" I would think that they are naive and have had a pretty easy life versus "my dd lost his job and I needed to drop out for a few semesters to pay the bills but was able to go back and get a 4.0 while working full time". I should clarify that it probably doesn't matter how "tragic" or "severe" the situation is versus how the person perceives it and the impact it has on their life and how they navigate through it.
     
    3) Pragmatism. The one thing that sets people apart on their applications (IMHO) is realism. As soon as I read  some BS boilerplate standard premed answer I lose interest. Show some humility, show some honesty, and not in a humble brag way I'm talking real honest experience. "When I was picked on in high school I took it very hard, I was very depressed and I had very negative thoughts of myself. My grades suffered and that further added to my decreased sense of self worth". Here's where you can have two totally different narratives (tell me which one is better) 1) "but I managed to convince myself I was worth it and I persevered because I am a self starter and really talented" 2) "I sought help from my friends and counselling, it was a long difficult journey but with some assistance I gained new insight and I learned from that experience that it is OK to seek help and I should be on the look out to help others".
     
    4) What you learned and how you will do things differently to avoid the situation or to be able to bounce back quicker.
     
     
    GL  
  14. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Olle in What Is The Maginot Line For First Year Gpa?   
    The Maginot line was all for show and was completely bypassed when the Germans flanked into Belgium triggering the war.
     
    My first year GPA was 3.6. Too many lab courses, too many core courses, me and chem just don't get along (why can't we all just get along?!). I finished my degree in 3 years so my 1st year GPA was extra crucial but I nailed the 4.0 on years 2 and 3 when it was just stuff I was into. Moral of the anecdote is a rough first year is not the end of the world, this is a marathon not a sprint, and WW 2 analogies are highly controversial
     
    GL 
  15. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from MountainAmoeba in What Is The Best Mcat Prep Book For True Beginners?   
    Thank you MountainAmoeba for contributing, great posts there.
     
    Having re-read this I probably should clarify that the prep course that are 40-120 hours are not sufficient to prepare you for the test based on your background. They are reviews, and they go over material they assume you are comfortable with or have seen in the past.
     
    I am not here to shoot down your dream, rather I am trying to help you realistically approach it. I can't fathom a way for someone with a grade 11 science background to adequately prepare for an MCAT in a few months time, might be possible if you quit your job or studies and did nothing but study 16 hours a day but otherwise I think you are setting yourself up for disappointment.
     
    When I started my medschool push I had a grade 10 science background. I had to take all high school level science course by distance learning, these took about 60-80 hours a piece with studying and going through course material. I then basically set up my first year of university as an mcat prep taking physics, bio, english, chem, ochem, biochem. I had to start in the summer the year before and I was taking course the summer that i wrote the MCAT and I was still behind a physics requirement which i had to study on my own. Pouring max effort into these course, taking a 40 hour prep course and every practice exam I could I still only eked out what was considered a middle of the road (33R) test score.
     
    If you are applying to schools that require the full MCAT I just don't know how one could realistically prep in such a short time given they have never seen the material before when any one single section of the MCAT has been known to break people. 
     
    I agree with mountain, I think taking some courses at a baseline would be a bear minimum. that being said I don't know you, I don't know how quickly you learn and I don't know what your baseline science level is.
     
    Please take it easy on yourself when approaching this. It is a marathon not a sprint and I wouldn't want to see someone get turned off their goal because they took on too much all at once.
     
    GL
  16. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Selstaar in Filing Complaint   
    I'm one of those petty people (not that you are) who pick strange hills to die on.
     
    I fought a lot of things I thought were "unfair" during med school ranging from talking to the class rep all the way to the dean, to talking to the university ethics committee.
     
    Here is what I can tell you:
     
    1) It didn't come back to me in a negative way, I matched to an extremely competitive specialty at the same school as my undergrad, I did fine on rotations, and never woke up to a horse's head in my bed. Yeah, I got some dirty looks from some admin staff but at the end of the day you were selected for this job to be an advocate and someone has to be willing to go against the grain every now and then.
     
    2) That being said I don't think I ever won a single fight, not one. As others have alluded too they are holding all of the cards and can rationalize things anyway they want and unless it is something particularly egregious no one with the power to do anything is going to lose political points to fight for you. That is just reality. So you don't get to chose your rotations, you still get to complete them, graduate on time, and are not being punished for missing months of school (something i don't understand btw but it doesn't really matter).  Yes, to you and me who know that not getting good electives can hamper our CaRMS chances, we know that this really sucks but someone was going to get those rotations anyway meaning it is possible to match with them, it just might be harder for what you are going for.
     
    I have heard of people offering thousands of dollars to switch rotations so that they can get choice electives thinking their CaRMS app totally depends on it. I have seen some people luck out completely and get the most ideal schedule and then match to something easy. None of it is "fair", but none of it is fair in the same sense that some of us lived at home and had our parents cook us food during undergrad so we could study more while others had a job. Or not fair in the sense that some people's parents are in medicine and get firends to let them shadow their kids and get them choice electives.
     
    My point is that on the microscopic level it is never "fair". It is only when you zoom out and see the big picture that it all starts to look "even", and that is what people care about, not your own personal struggles but that the system is approximately fair. No one else on this planet (besides maybe your parents and your friend who will always take your side) cares if you don't get a chance to chose your electives, that is your cross to bear. Just like the person in your class has to bear an illness while a few more have children or are making some. At the end of teh day the school will provide you with a certain number of electives before CaRMS and that is what they have established is the bear minimum.
     
    Is this fair to you? no not really
    Is it a hill you should die on? no, probably not
    Why? because as a wise man (or a character in a movie or video game, can't really remember) once said "only fight if you think you can win", 
  17. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from woodsman in Is It Insane To Turn Down Your Only Medical School Offer?   
    Accept and defer for a year if you absolutely have to. Otherwise it's like winning the lottery and throwing out the ticket because the next jackpot is bigger and hoping you win that one.
  18. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Dr. Octavius in What's Your Opinion About Going To Ireland?   
  19. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from trimethoprim in What's Your Opinion About Going To Ireland?   
  20. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from rial2 in Would You Ever Write About A Controversial Change-Of-Heart In An Application?   
    Ok here is your problem:
     
    "describe an instance of personal growth you've achieved" does not equal "tell me about how you used to be a terrible person but are now slightly less terrible". The question appears wide open but here are some equally horrible responses (besides claiming how you used to be a bigot and are now maybe less of a bigot because of reason xyz) to put this in context:
    1) I used to poop my pants everyday but around age 3 I learned to use the toilet 
    2) I used to pull the hair of girls I liked until I got on Tinder
    3) I used to be scared of the water but then I learned to swim
    Etc
     
    learning not to be a bigot is not "personal growth" its basic crap that every decent human being is supposed to have at a baseline. You don't get points for something you are supposed to do anyway. To borrow from Chris Rock it is like bragging about how you are not in jail, "you are not supposed to go to jail".
     
    So to reiterate there is nowhere that this is applicable. You will gain nothing by trying to use this as an example. It is a horrible, horrible, idea.
     
    If you want something about personal growth talk about how your eyes were opened to the plight of the refugees, the hardships they have underwent, the difficult journey, the effects of PTSD, how this inspired you to reach out and help them. That is not the same as "I used to hate them but now I don't".
  21. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from rial2 in Would You Ever Write About A Controversial Change-Of-Heart In An Application?   
    I don't know of a situation where this would be applicable nor can I think of any benefit that can be gained by it.
  22. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Nidhogg in If Medicine Really Worth It   
    I will bite because this is something that had been a central theme throughout med school for me.
     
    1) We would all like to think that people get into medicine for noble reasons, and when we are interviewing everyone plays the part. "I want to advance (insert random cause here) and be a role model" "I want to be at the forefront of human science and technology" "I want to cure (insert random disease here) that affected my second cousin twice removed". The reality is much different. From my experience people get into medicine for a varying combination of the following reasons: 
     
    1) Steady and secure job with great pay and portability
    2) Respect from society
    3) Respect from parents/girlfriend/boyfriend/best friend/high school guidance counselor who said you would never amount to anything
    4) Parents are forcing me
    5) I want a job where I think and don't get my hands dirty
    6) I like gross things and I want to cut into people
    7) I like power
    8) I want to do something that has meaning/purpose
    9) I want people to think I am smart
    10) I want to help people*
     
    * This is always the first thing that people say and it is always the first thing that goes by the wayside. Personally I think when people are forced to really examine this motive there isn't much depth to it. If you want to "help people" (and not you personally but people in general) why does it have to be medicine? Why not psychology, PT/OT, resp therapy, non-medical stuff like working for an NGO or social work. Everyone on this forum will say that this is their number one reason why they follow this path but I got to tell you when someone is on hour 22 of a 30 hour call shift and they are called to see a patient, or to make it a bit more relevant to you, when someone is in clinic and they are trying to get through 20-40 patients so they can pay the bills and keep the lights on, it is rarely the "desire to help people" that keeps them going. It is all the other things on the list, and most of the time it is all about the Benjamins. 
     
    Now this is coming from someone who has just been on a month of night shifts in a major city's ER, and I fully admit I am a bit burnt and bitter, but this is a longstanding trend I have observed. 
     
    Everyone comes into medical school thinking "I will be the one who is different, I am going to get through all this and stay true to my ideals and principles" yet I can only think of a handful of docs I have come across who I would safely say have maintained a noble perspective. Medschool and residency changes people and strips away the veneer of false motives. What comes out on the other side is usually not the ideal. Again this is not always the case.
     
    I remember a resident I met on a rotation when I was a 1st year med student. I thought she was the best person I had ever come across. Did a masters, big on refugee health care, big on women's health. She was in 1st year of residency. Took time to teach, took time to talk to every patient and make sure they understood everything, called families at home. Advance 3 years and I am on rotation and she is a senior resident. Total 180. 3 years of being perpetually tired, abused by patients and preceptors, and never leaving the hospital broke her. She was like every other surgical senior resident: hard as nails with zero patience for anything or anyone. It is something I am watching play out again in real time as my friends advance through residency. I distinctly recall mourning the day a close friend matched to gen surge because I knew she would be a different person on the other side and I am sad to say I already hate how bitter and jaded she has become 2 years in.
     
    I personally believe that everyone who gets into this wants to be good at it regardless of their motives. I think almost everyone wants to do the right thing in most situations. But I think that the system is broken and the weight of the world crushes most peoples idealism and the only thing that keeps them going is the more baser desires. The few who are the exceptions to the rule are truly remarkable people and if you ever come across one do all that you can to learn from them and keep them in your life. 
     
    2) Now with respect to your condition.
     
    Take your family doc for example. They have the shortest and easiest residencies. Family medicine usually attracts the more bubbly and idealistic students because it involves spending your day working with patients and their families. However, some pick family med because it is the easiest and most portable vocation. It is no secret that they don't get paid very well compared to other specialties, meaning if you want to make money you need to see as many patients as possible in a day. Most fee for service is set up on a 15 minute billing code. So they get paid X amount to see a patient for 15 minutes. If it is a complicated patient or there is something extra to be done they can charge extra (to the province) for things like a pap, or to remove stitches, etc. For most patients they can only charge the basic 15 minute rate. Working 8 hours a day means 32 patients if it works like clock work. To make any real money you need to see >40 patients in a day so some aren't getting their full 15 minutes. Others are going to take up more than their 15 and so that eats into the schedule too.
     
    So you come to the office with a complicated complaint related to something that requires a specialist. Your family doctor has a very basic knowledge of how to treat complex endocrine disorders, that is why we have endocrinologists. How long does it take for you to tell them what is wrong? How long to examine? How long to chart? Now you have a problem that they don't know a lot about and have to try to look stuff up, how much can you learn about a complex endocrinopathy in 15 minutes? in 5 minutes? Not enough to treat someone effectively. Your family doc is saying to themselves "I don't know how to treat this person, they have a specialist who knows, why are they coming to see me about something I can't fix? The specialist will know how what to do. Are they dying? No, they can wait to see their specialist". 
     
    Now you see your specialist, and this is the big disconnect between physicians and society. What you think is an emergency or urgent is not the same as what they do. You think "this is really affecting my life, I am suffering, I need help, why won't anyone help me?". Your specialist is thinking "I had 2 patients die yesterday on call, I have to get through 30 follow up appointments today, one of them is that woman who keeps coming to emerge in query thyroid storm, one of them is that guy whose blood sugar is through the roof and he keeps going into DKA and I am worried he will die this week, and one is that person with the hashimotos and the headaches whose family doc keeps sending them to me". From the endos standpoint you are the least sick person they will see that day and their therapeutic goals are not the same as yours. You want to be back to normal health, they want to do the best they can for you but primarily keep you alive.
     
    Its not the endos fault, there is just so many hours in the day and so many patients to see. Same for the family doc. Giving them the benefit of the doubt they are probably doing the best they can for you considering they only know so much and have so many other patients to see. I never give medical advice over the internet, and given that you have a family doc, an endocrinologist, and a plastic surgeon who are all qualified physicians it would be presumptuous of me to think they haven't considered a prolactinoma, but given your headaches I would be remiss to tell you that if you start having vision changes (tunnel vision) that you need to see someone and let them know about that new symptom.
     
    TLDR: If you want to help people you don't have to be a doctor. Most physicians want to do a good job and help you but their motives are not always 100% to "help people". There seems to be a communication breakdown about what your goals of health are and what can be done for you at the moment and you should discuss this at your next visit. 
     
    Good Luck
  23. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from Birdy in Would You Ever Write About A Controversial Change-Of-Heart In An Application?   
    Ok here is your problem:
     
    "describe an instance of personal growth you've achieved" does not equal "tell me about how you used to be a terrible person but are now slightly less terrible". The question appears wide open but here are some equally horrible responses (besides claiming how you used to be a bigot and are now maybe less of a bigot because of reason xyz) to put this in context:
    1) I used to poop my pants everyday but around age 3 I learned to use the toilet 
    2) I used to pull the hair of girls I liked until I got on Tinder
    3) I used to be scared of the water but then I learned to swim
    Etc
     
    learning not to be a bigot is not "personal growth" its basic crap that every decent human being is supposed to have at a baseline. You don't get points for something you are supposed to do anyway. To borrow from Chris Rock it is like bragging about how you are not in jail, "you are not supposed to go to jail".
     
    So to reiterate there is nowhere that this is applicable. You will gain nothing by trying to use this as an example. It is a horrible, horrible, idea.
     
    If you want something about personal growth talk about how your eyes were opened to the plight of the refugees, the hardships they have underwent, the difficult journey, the effects of PTSD, how this inspired you to reach out and help them. That is not the same as "I used to hate them but now I don't".
  24. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from m_jacob_45 in Would You Ever Write About A Controversial Change-Of-Heart In An Application?   
    Ok here is your problem:
     
    "describe an instance of personal growth you've achieved" does not equal "tell me about how you used to be a terrible person but are now slightly less terrible". The question appears wide open but here are some equally horrible responses (besides claiming how you used to be a bigot and are now maybe less of a bigot because of reason xyz) to put this in context:
    1) I used to poop my pants everyday but around age 3 I learned to use the toilet 
    2) I used to pull the hair of girls I liked until I got on Tinder
    3) I used to be scared of the water but then I learned to swim
    Etc
     
    learning not to be a bigot is not "personal growth" its basic crap that every decent human being is supposed to have at a baseline. You don't get points for something you are supposed to do anyway. To borrow from Chris Rock it is like bragging about how you are not in jail, "you are not supposed to go to jail".
     
    So to reiterate there is nowhere that this is applicable. You will gain nothing by trying to use this as an example. It is a horrible, horrible, idea.
     
    If you want something about personal growth talk about how your eyes were opened to the plight of the refugees, the hardships they have underwent, the difficult journey, the effects of PTSD, how this inspired you to reach out and help them. That is not the same as "I used to hate them but now I don't".
  25. Like
    Fresh fry got a reaction from maverick5 in Would You Ever Write About A Controversial Change-Of-Heart In An Application?   
    Ok here is your problem:
     
    "describe an instance of personal growth you've achieved" does not equal "tell me about how you used to be a terrible person but are now slightly less terrible". The question appears wide open but here are some equally horrible responses (besides claiming how you used to be a bigot and are now maybe less of a bigot because of reason xyz) to put this in context:
    1) I used to poop my pants everyday but around age 3 I learned to use the toilet 
    2) I used to pull the hair of girls I liked until I got on Tinder
    3) I used to be scared of the water but then I learned to swim
    Etc
     
    learning not to be a bigot is not "personal growth" its basic crap that every decent human being is supposed to have at a baseline. You don't get points for something you are supposed to do anyway. To borrow from Chris Rock it is like bragging about how you are not in jail, "you are not supposed to go to jail".
     
    So to reiterate there is nowhere that this is applicable. You will gain nothing by trying to use this as an example. It is a horrible, horrible, idea.
     
    If you want something about personal growth talk about how your eyes were opened to the plight of the refugees, the hardships they have underwent, the difficult journey, the effects of PTSD, how this inspired you to reach out and help them. That is not the same as "I used to hate them but now I don't".
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