Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Blessings and Privileges of being a medical student

For all the early mornings, the extra late nights, and super long days of studying, sometimes I am just taken aback by how lucky I am to be a medical student.

In the past year, I saw the best and worst of patients, from a traumatic attack case, where the patient was left intubated and his ear infected and falling off, to a patient getting a breast reduction. From a patient with phyllodes tumor and had a double mastectomy, to a tiny baby, 33 days old, getting a pyloric stenosis resection. From appendectomies to hysterectomies and D&Cs. I've had the privilege of birthing life into the world as well as comforting an elderly patient on his last breaths. I've stitched cuts together and advised patients on addiction resources. I've even searched for a lost tampon (gross).

At the time, none of it seemed to be a big deal. I was a medical student, and I was there to do my job, which was to take care of patients the way I was trained. It is only thinking back now, as I am about to leave Vegas for residency, that I can truly appreciate how blessed I have been to have had wonderful teachers, both doctors and patients, guide my way towards my next step. I have learned so much, about medicine and about human life in these last two years of clinical clerkships. I've had patients tell me their deepest fears and darkest secrets. I've seen the most dignified patients at their worst, and important persons unconscious. Through it all, I've learned that disease does not discriminate. It does not matter how old, young, rich, poor, unknown, or famous a person is, everyone gets sick sometime in their life. So enjoy health while you can, for it truly is a privilege.

Stay safe and healthy,
Z


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