Ahmad Sampang ibnu Hajiri, MD

A Personal blog by a Tausug medical student (now a doctor!) from Sulu and the stories that inspired him.
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ICC Journal, Day 1: Still a lot to learn

By  AhmadMD _     October 13, 2014    Labels:,,,,,,,,,, 
Assalamu Alaykum! (Peace be upon you all!)

This is a fast post on my daily adventure in the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) as an ICC (3rd year) student. I may not may not edit this depends on the free time I might have. Contrary to what most medical students say, ICC days are not always benign and free; there are pseudo-benign and some toxic days as well. This journal begins today (I did not include the two weeks in Management course as they did not involve patient care and exposure :) This journal aims to document the daily experience and learning I had and will have as part of one of the most awesome group/block in our class, Block 6A! (Bllooooock Sixey!)

DAY 1:

Today marks the first day of our legit training as ICC Students. The last two weeks in management was quite benign alright, and this is the first time for our group to finally get real in patient contact and out-patient exposures. Yes, we had our fair share of lenient days the past two weeks and those actually made some terrible impact on our "momentum": We feel bored in reviewing our notes from last year, we utterly don't feel very much confident in facing our real patients, and after knowing that we will have a one-student-one-patient-one-resident scenario, we were all in a state of breaking down from nervousness! Even the usually confident ones in our group were spewing some nervousness after all! haha!

Our first rotation was Dermatology and we will stay here for only one week. This will be our last rotation in Derma (yup, until we graduate, unless we enroll in their electives). And so with that limited time we have, we were asked to grab the opportunity to learn the best we can in our short stay.


The first rule in derma is never ever be late! We have a log-in sheet at the Resident's desk with our names in it (there were no columns where you write what time you arrived, but the paper  was placed in a desk where everyone would know who is late and who is not.) The rule: be late in 15 minutes and you will be marked as "late". Be late more than that and you will be considered as "absent". Yes. Your existence does not matter anymore after than fifteen minute mark.

The call time for the department in the morning is 8AM and 1:300 in the afternoon. They also have this clock that is some 5 or 10 minutes advanced (compared to the Calderon time). It is better for you not to know the "advance time", just consider it as the right time :)


The second rule: All students must be in complete uniform. No scrubs. No type B uniform (in case you don't know, it's the white pants with white collared shirts), and of course type C is out of the question (colored shirts). Open shoes are also not allowed. So here we are feeling like real medical students after years (?) of being not so strict in our uniforms :P maybe it would be for the better hehe. We really have to look presentable to our patients after all.

A wacky pose after our lunch "meeting" :)


Our group is the department's first ICC group for this school year, and this year they have adapted a new module. A new way to let students learn more and appreciate their experience in dermatology better. Instead of conducting lectures, patient cases and SGDs, they made a new experiment. And we are the first ones to try it! haha! We love it!


If there is something a medical student must be prepared of, it's this. Know the Top 10 Skin lesions in the PGH ambulatory setting. These ten dermatoses (skin diseases) will be your benchmarks in your progress in this clinical rotation. Here is the mission: by the end of the week, each of us student must have at least directly handled 6 out of the 10, and observed the other 4. We were given these sheets of paper where we write the names of our patient, check if we have directly handled them or just observed from other students or residents.

They have a SIM (self-instructional material) that we would often use. It is helpful, but not at all times :) Just today on our first day we already had two pretty uncommon lesions that we were asked to diagnose @_@


This. This one rule made our palms sweat like crazy (or maybe it was just me) haha!
Well, during the orientation, we were told that each student will have to get at least two patients to handle per day, and each student will be supervised by the residents, one-on-one. Well, at least that's they told us. but today was more of a two-student partners working on a patient with one resident (there were fewer residents available that time). A consultant will also be assigned to a number of students, better be prepared if you were among them.


As I have said, we had a two-week semi-benign with our past module, and with this we felt like we were not ready at all with this sudden exposure we had: No more warm-ups! No more trials! These are real patients we are already handling! And we know almost nothing (yet)! At least that was what we felt on the first few hours... but after all of us had our first patient, the next one went rather smooth, Alhamdulillah/ :) It seems we just need to wake up and just feel the pressure to get our "sleeping" selves get up working once again.


Today was indeed full of learning :) Just on our first day, we were able to observe at least 5 of the common lesions. I have directly handled two patients with my partner, and observed three other conditions. But midst all that, one thing was certainly sure: We (I) still need to learn a lot more. I have to re-read and review our past lectures. I need to read more on the pathophysiology, treatments and managements of these conditions. Have to master each of them and at least learn the differences. Have to re-train myself in doing my directed history taking and physical examinations. 

This might be our first day as ICC students, but it is already a great "dipping our feet in the cold water" to see how things go. We might not have done very good today, but tomorrow in sha Allah we will do better :)
The Awesome Block 6A :)
After our first day in dermatology

with that I end this first day entry to my ICC Journal :)
See ya around in PGH guys!

Slam kasilasa!
Anakiluh, MD

About AhmadMD _

Ahmad is a young Tausug Physician now serving as one of the Doctor to the Barrios (DTTB). He is a free spirit. He loves coffee. And fish.

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just saying. -Dr. Ahmad