Thursday, July 10, 2014

Viewing the Different Organs

We started class today by reviewing the different pathways in the heart- it was a bit complicated because I did not have any prior knowledge on the detailed anatomy of the heart. Half of the class then left to either go to the OR or the clinic. The rest of the class then divided into small groups to perform heart and lung tests. We started out by checking our own heartbeat in four different places. I could not hear my heartbeat at first because I was not pressing the stethoscope against my chest hard enough. We also performed lung tests on each other. There are four different places on a person's back that you can check to make sure that their lungs are functioning properly. You slowly move the stethoscope down the person's back to check for abnormal rhythms. I also learned that there is a pulse at the top of the foot; however, my pulse was very subtle and it took me a while to find it.
 After we finished using the stethoscopes, we went to the lab room for two hours. During the first hour, I looked at a couple of slides under the microscope. I was able to see different cells. I surprised that I was able to differentiate between the different types of cells. I also learned how to distinguish between cardiac, smooth, and skeletal muscle cells.
The Lab Room
The second hour was the highlight of the day. I had the opportunity to see the heart and the lungs. I saw two different hearts- one was extremely enlarged because it was forced to work harder. One of the hearts also had a damaged aorta. The aorta was clogged by plaque which prevented blood from flowing smoothly, so the surgeon had inserted a tube to help regulate the flow of blood. In addition to the heart, I was also able to see a healthy versus a damaged lung. None of the lungs were completely healthy though due to pollution in the air; however, one was completely darkened due to smoking. The healthier one was soft while the damaged one was extremely hard.

After lunch, my class started with students sharing their experiences at the OR and clinic. One of my classmates was able to see multiple surgeries including a brain surgery and a heart surgery. However, she also shared a sad story of how one of the patients who was in a car accident went into coma. When the students finished sharing their stories, our instructors told us the steps they took to reach medical school. They all had unique stories.  I was able to relate to one of the instructors because she also had been interested in becoming a doctor ever since she was in elementary school. One of the important pieces of advice they gave was not to give up because medical school will seem very challenging at first; however, it is worth it at the end of the day.

We ended class by working on our group projects. My group was able to finish the project on neurosurgery early. We created a very interesting case about a twenty-four year old women who was going through an awful time period in her life. We decided to diagnose her with a brain tumor on her Occipital lobe. 

Dinner was the last event for today. I decided to get pasta instead of getting a hamburger- which is what I usually get for dinner. After dinner, my friends and I decided to play pool. This was my first time playing it, so I did not do so great. I could not even hold the pool stick properly. Hopefully, I will improve as the days go by.

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