Third rotation DOWN! When I say "time flies" I am not joking. Currently, I'm in my Internal Medicine Rotation (Part 1) so I just wanted to take a little bit of time to do a recap of my previous rotation: Pediatrics.Read More
Happy Friday my friends! I was so excited when Nicolet, from Nicolet.Life, asked if I would contribute to the series she started. Of course I was all for it, because this series is all about Osteopathic Medicine from the eyes of different individuals. Whether medical students, pre-med, etc.
I will link the piece down below, so be sure to check it out! (Also, check out the other pieces and learn a little bit more about Osteopathic Medicine from different perspectives).
Link to my guest post:
"Osteopathic Medicine: from the eyes of Dorothy"
Once you've read it, let me know what you think & what stood out to you the most! Don't forget to also show some love to my friend Nicolet ;)
Since getting into an osteopathic medical school, I've gotten more questions about whether I'll be obtaining an M.D. degree. I respond by saying "No, I'm going be getting a D.O. degree - Doctor of Osteopathy". They then proceed to inquire "So do you deal with bones? Is that like a chiropractor? Or no wait - like an orthopedic?" Back then, all I really knew was that osteopathic physicians look at the person as a whole - Mind, Body, and Spirit. Other than that, I wasn't exactly sure how to explain it - I mean, I have yet to learn all about being a D.O.
So - what exactly is a D.O. and how do they differ from M.D.'s?
- D.O.'s are trained to listen and take in all the information given by their patients and holistically treat them, taking into consideration Mind, Body, and Spirit.
- D.O.'s are additionally trained in Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (aka: OMT) where we can use our hands to diagnose and treat musculoskeletal illnesses or injuries, to promote self-healing. (This can be used to treat in addition to pharmaceuticals and/or surgery).
- D.O.'s are trained to view all systems of the body as interrelated. One affected system means that another system may be compromised. (Basically: Structure is to Function, as Function is to Structure).
- For additional information, head to www.doctorsthatdo.org
Now, what about M.D.s? Often considered as our counterparts, allopathic physicians generally treat the disease with appropriate pharmaceutical and surgery. Now - I say generally because allopaths focus more on treating symptoms to rid the body of disease. BUT nowadays, I believe that more allopaths are seeing the importance and incorporating preventive medicine, and seeing the patient as a whole - which is awesome! So really, instead of considering them as our counterparts, I believe that they are our allies in providing healthcare!
At the end of the day, the goal of the both D.O.s and M.D.s are to get the patient well and improve quality of life.
- Both are able to train in the same specialties, and undergo residencies (whether it's surgery, neurology, cardiology, family medicine, etc.)
- Both are generally licensed by the same licensing boards.
- Both work together in the same settings.
So there you have it, osteopathic physicians are not chiropractors or orthopedics (although they can specialize in orthopedic surgery ;) ).
Just when I thought that all the snow has finally melted away, it started snowing again as I was heading off to my first ever medical mission trip to Ecuador. The excitement was through the roof. Before taking off, we had a weekend where we got to know others who were going to embark on this journey and we were asked what our expectations were - mine were: serve the people in Ecuador through medicine, share the love of God, take in as much of experience as possible. Little did I know that those expectations were going to be shattered and replaced with something even greater than what I can imagine.
Three-fourths of the way done with medical school, I still felt like I didn't have a lot to offer while going on this mission trip. If there's anything I learned in medical school, it's that I still don't know a lot. We were told that us students would basically be the front line seeing the patients and interacting with them as opposed to only shadowing - and that was exactly what went down. The first day we had clinic, a fellow student and I (both first years) took on patients and we basically looked like deer-in-the-headlights. It was a daunting task (don't worry, we were working very closely with residents and attendings who were guiding us along the way). Daunting because we have not done this before, yet very exhilarating because we were actually getting to put our learned skills to use.
Between our four clinic days, and even having a day where our translation source was limited we as a group saw countless patients who had illnesses that would have been easily preventable had they had the resources. Most common cause of headache: dehydration - "mas agua", we told them - but then clean water is not easily accessible. Some may argue that the medical help that we bring is only temporary, but the core of our trip was to bring the people we served in Ecuador more than just temporary care - we wanted to bring to them Hope.
Hope that there will be a better tomorrow, and hope that there is life to the fullest in Christ Jesus. We came to help equip the local churches and local leaders to better serve their communities. It was not just setting up the clinics, and leaving them with temporary medicine. Our hope was for these communities to flourish and be able to work together to better their quality of life.
It is opportunities such as this that enables me to see past the difficult days in medical school - to truly appreciate that not only can I serve those from the U.S. but also those who are in a different continent than I. That what I'm doing will actually be worth it.
P.S. On our last day of our trip, we got to explore the city of Los Banos and do touristy things - here’s a picture of our group:
If there is one word that I can use to describe where I am in life and how I'm feeling, it would be: AMAZED.
Currently, I am in the mountains of West Virginia half-way through my first year of medical school. This is the farthest I have been from my family and Joshua, for the longest time. I am doing the very thing that I believe God has called me to do and has equipped me for. I have made amazing friends, built new relationships and with all the things that are yet to come all I can say, think, and feel is that I am simply... amazed.
One year ago, I would not have imagined that I would be where I am now. Around this time last year, I have not heard from any medical schools yet, and it was hard not to lose hope. But God (who has reminded me over and over and over again) continued to remind me to trust Him and that He will take me where he wants me to be. As hesitant as I was to step into the unknown and say "Okay God, here goes nothing" I took up a full time-job working at a physicians office. To be honest, I also started to think of back-up plans if things were not to go "as expected". So much for trusting the unknown - right? I am not saying back-up plans are bad - I actually think that it IS good to have back-up plans. But knowing the type of person that I am, I easily get carried away with my back-up plans and focus on them instead of actually putting my trusting in God to work.
Soon after a few months of working, I am on a plane to WV for a medical school interview. I am literally going into the unknown: I know nothing about West Virginia; the size of the town was about as big as my high school; I don't do mountains - I've lived by the coast my whole life. Talk about God uprooting me and putting me in the wilderness of the unknown. SCARY. CRAZY. EXCITING. All at the same time.
Little did I know, that this town will become my home. I have grown to love this place, and the people in it. I truly believe that God has placed me here, at this school, for a reason. I will even venture out to say that God has made my decision-making easy by allowing me one choice.
So now, I'm here. Learning the things that I've dreamed to learn about. To do the things I have always wished to do. Still, I look back at everything that has happened in my life - the sequence of events - and I am amazed. The way that God has carried me through it all, despite my disobedience at times. He reminds me of where He wants to take me - what His plans are. He also reminds me that I can plan as much as I want, but gently reminds me that His plans are far better than I can ever hope for or imagine. And He's right. He's so right. Where I am now is something that my "senior-in-highschool-self" would not even imagine. Where I will be in the future is something that I am extremely excited about.
With all this, I am here to say that life is a crazy whirlwind and it can pull us to all different directions. But I believe that God is speaking to you, asking you to listen to His still voice, so that He can lead you into a place far better than what you can ever dream for. His promises are true, and He continues to fulfill them for me day after day. Not because of anything good that I do or say - but it's because of Who He is: He is a good Father, and He wants the best for us.
To this day, I am grateful for where I am. I pray that every time you and I look back through all the things God has brought us through - that we will be amazed at how good and faithful He is.