Day 1: Orientation

          First, let’s see how well you did on your medical terminology exam (the questions are at the end of my last post) before I fill you in on how mine went. In order, the answers are Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Ears, Nose, Throat (ENT), beats per minute (bpm), intravenous (IV), Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS), Bowel Movement (BM), and Protection, Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation (PRICE). Well? How did you do?

          Anyway, my orientation was this past Tuesday (August 27th). The medical terminology exam went very well and the average of the entire class (54 students), in my opinion, was high. It was a 100 question multiple-choice exam, some questions more specific than others, but most of which I remembered practicing while studying sample questions throughout the terminology textbook. The professors said that personal grades will be sent before the start of classes.

          After the exam, the next seven hours were slightly overwhelming, but extremely informative. The credentials of each faculty member are amazing and inspiring, and it is clear that they are all willing and able to help us students whenever and wherever help is needed. It was also great to finally meet my other classmates and to be able to put faces to the names/phone numbers I have been texting to for the past eight months. So, overall, I left orientation incredibly impressed with the knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm of both the faculty members and my classmates.

          I begin classes next Wednesday (September 4th). The professors made it clear that we do not ease into the course material and work load as we once did in our undergraduate studies. Instead, the information starts piling on from Day 1. The only added materials needed for this first semester are a few pairs of scrubs, as we have been told that working with our first ‘patients’ can get messy. My first class of PA school, next Wednesday, will be Clinical Medicine I. I have some reading to do this weekend for this course pertaining to the basics of physical exams, and I also have to brush up on my skull anatomy before Wednesday’s lecture. This specific Clinical Medicine course is divided into four sections: HEENT (head, eyes, ears, nose, throat), dermatology (skin), GI (gastroenterology) and ID (infectious disease), each of which lasts about seven weeks and culminates in a comprehensive final. We begin the semester with HEENT and dermatology and finish off with GI and ID. And that’s just one class…

Question of the week: What is the heaviest organ of the human body, by weight? 

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