Friday, June 15, 2012

Great Question! ...Look it up and get back to me.

Posted by Bex Kurian at Friday, June 15, 2012


SHUT THE FRONT DOOR. I can’t believe it’s already been 4 weeks. This month has been about more than gaining pharmacy knowledge; it’s been about adjusting to an entirely new lifestyle. I have more reflections than a room full of mirrors in a haunted house:


1. White coats get dirty too quickly.
2. My business professional wardrobe needs some MAD UPGRADING. 
3. You get sleepy earlier when you have to wake up earlier. On a more consistent basis. Without midday naps. 
4. Several institutions, including banks, car places, and University-affiliated offices are closed by the time you’re done with rotation. 
5. Note to self: no longer pass judgment on major coffee addicts (see number 3).
6. Second note to self: Come up with better answer for "So, what do you plan on doing after pharmacy school" (that conveys you have the slightest idea)
7. Comfortable non-sneaker shoes. Self explanatory.
8. Meeting the man of your dreams on rotation SOUNDS like a good plan, until you realize you can’t look nice every day of the week. In fact, you can barely look nice once a month. And that was for a wedding.
9. Hot lunch. It adds UP. 

I’m at Henry Ford West Bloomfield, and I was pumped like a BICYCLE TIRE to get started. Not just because it was my first (EVER!) rotation. This hospital is off the chain! Let me tell you: everything you’ve heard is true. Every patient gets their own room, with a plasma TV and a gorgeous view—idea being that nature and privacy are therapeutic. Beautiful atriums. Pianist at lunchtime. Healthy, non-deep-fried cafeteria food. No visiting hours. No mealtime hours.
In a word: BALLIN!
My experience here has been nothing short of fantastic. They had a schedule written out for me, so no awkward I’m-the-student-don’t-wanna-get-in-the-way-but-I-guess-I’m-shadowing-you-today moments. They have lots of space, so I always have a computer terminal to myself. I am learning up a STORM. In addition to a growing awareness of my incompetence, I’ve actually been able to (wait for it… wait for it) APPLY SOME THINGS WE LEARNED IN CLASS.
Yeah.
That’s right.
I said it. Look out the window. Are pigs flying?!? Here’s a small glimpse of what I’ve done so far!
  1. Rounds/Operations:
  2. See Title. In addition to actual information, a big part of rounds has been learning the PROCESS, ie how do you “work up” a patient? What are some key things pharmacists need to be looking out for? Also, it’s been cool getting to see all the disciplines (respiratory therapy, nurses, pharmacy, nutrition, Drs, PAs) interact. I suffer from chronic WTA syndrome (What’s That Acronym), because I feel like every disease state known to man is expressed in a three-letter abbreviation. I look up EVERYTHING IN THE WORLD after rounds. I've made progress with pharmacokinetic dosing! I'm also finally starting to try to potentially make steps towards eventually understanding fluids and electrolytes.Things make more sense because I’m working with and following real patients. It’s also been eye-opening to realize how many OTHER things go on with patients, beyond their drugs.
  3. Coumadin counseling:
  4. This is awesome because teaching/counseling is one of my favorite things about pharmacy EVER. We counsel patients on Coumadin before they’re discharged. It’s great feeling like you’re the SOURCE of relevant info! And I’ve gotten some phenomenal questions that I’ve had to look up and get back with people (did you know Coumadin can make menstrual periods heavier? Makes sense, but I never thought about it!
  5. Special Projects:
  6. There’s always some issue going on in the pharmacy that needs further investigation by a naïve and eager student. Pancuronium is on back order, what can we substitute in our neonatal trays? What about stability? What’s the best prophylactic antibiotic for this new surgical procedure coming to HFWB? This is the perfect opportunity to finally read some serious-business guidelines I’ve heard about, but never really had time to look at thoroughly: SCIP, IDSA, CHEST, etc.. I’m also working on a Coumadin project that’s given me a way better feel for INRs. Coumadin dosing, as my preceptor said, is more of an art than a science.
I could go on and on. I did, actually—but I deleted the last 7 paragraphs because really, that’s just embarrassing. 
I’ll just end by saying that rotation is what you make of it. Lots of AHA! moments, and lots of SHOOT I VAGUELY REMEMBER LEARNING THAT P2 YEAR OR SOMETHING moments. But the harder you work, the more thorough you are in your projects and work-ups, the better it is. GET IT P4s! WE MOVIN ON UP! 

2 comments:

mariarx said...

Bex, your humor wins. May I suggest Cole Haan flats with the NikeAir soles... worth the investment!

Anonymous said...

I want to read more...written by you!