I got a patient with a query of diverticular disease for a long case.
Damn, I have completely forgotten how to manage this sort of patient. Furthermore, I have never clerked diverticular case before. I have clerked colon cancers, I have done Crohns, UC and some forms of bowel obstruction, I have done all sorts of hepatobiliary diseases, I have done hernias, I have done pancreatitis, I have done fistulas.
But I have never done a diverticular disease throughout the whole 8 weeks of surgical rotation.
Last night, in preparation for my long case today, I read about bowel cancer. I read about hepatobiliary diseases. I read about peptic ulcers. I read 20 other diseases including ways to investigate and manage these patients. I even read on Thyroid and Breast cancers…just in case.
I did skim through diverticular disease. But the night was late. And I was sleepy. And exhausted. Alas, I did not retain the information very well.
I had a vague idea of how to treat this patient. But I just was not sure whether or not I had gotten everything mixed up with other diseases.
I left the patient with a smile on my face, thanking him for his helpful history that would determine how good my presentation would be. Yes, I left the patient with a smile on my face, but a worry on my mind.
On the way back to the tutorial room for my case write up, my head churned with worry and panic. I wanted to pass my surgical long case. I did not want to repeat the whole rotation. Sure, I would miss Dr. Chen and I would miss Profesor Agrez and of course Surgery is interesting…..but that does not mean I want to do it all over again. Once is quite enough, thank you.
When I was called into the room for presentation, I have made up my mind to have two provisional diagnoses; diverticular disease and colon cancer. At least, that way, there would be a chance of me being hammered on colon cancer (which was something I know very well about) rather than just got asked on diverticular disease (which was not something I was confident to talk about at all).
My examiners were Dr. Paul Anseline and another doctor from the Mater hospital whom I have never met. Lucky me, they were both very nice.
And then miracle happened.
Suddenly, I remembered all about diverticular disease. Somehow, when the questions came, it triggered me to give the correct answers. I could not explain it. It must be the way Dr. Paul Anseline asked that questions.
You know, some surgeons (read: Dr. Chen) can be very vague when they asked you questions…sometimes you would have no idea what the surgeons want with that questions. But some surgeons are very specific with their questions….and that really help, I suppose.
At the middle of my presentation and question-answers session, I could already feel that they were going to pass me. But I was scared to be too confident. At the end of the presentation, they asked me to go out of the room, so that they could discuss my performance and give me my marks.
I waited for 2 minutes, and then they called me back in.
I looked at their face with bated breath.
“We are very happy with you. You passed!”
Alhamdulillah. Alhamdullilah. Alhamdulillah.
And now surgery is officially over. I would not be doing anymore surgical rotation until I become an intern. This is the last time I am doing surgical rotation before I graduate. And thank God, I passed. I am happy and content.
Below are the pictures I took with me in scrubs…hihihi. Dah lama aku teringin nak ambil gambar pakai scrubs. I waited until the last day of surgical rotation to take these pics. Tu pun kena tunggu sampai semua orang dah tak ada kat changing room..takut nanti diorang kata aku ni jakun la pulak. hahhahah.
After having passed my exam today (Alhamdulillah, semua budak Malaysia pass. Aku dapat tahu ada seorang Australian tak pass, according to Jacqui) aku, Balqis and Suhaila terus pergi Kotara. Makan2 dan pergi kedai buku agenda utama. I miss reading soo much! And of course, Suhaila and Balqis bershopping kasut (thanks to me for showing them the two very good, very beautiful pair of shoes that they would have missed if I did not point it out to them, for which I have already received their profuse gratitude, hihihih).
So below, are the pictures of our after-exam celebratory outing. We had fun and we thank Allah for all His blessings.
Indeed, with every difficulty comes relief. And when the hard times come, just remember : Allah says, “O you who believe, seek help through patience and prayer. Truly, God is with those who are patient.”