Tag Archives: stfm blog competition

The Chance to Be a Part of Patients’ Lives

1st place winner in the resident/fellow category in the 2015 STFM Blog Competition


Megan Chock, MD

One year ago (read: before intern year), pretty much the most exciting part of my fourth-year emergency medicine rotation was having my pager go off. BZZZZ!!!!!! I leapt into action, excitingly reading the text page: “Leg lac in E9.” I was on it.

Suture kit in hand, I burst through E9’s thin emergency department curtains with abandon—I was going to fix this. The “leg lac” turned out to be a wonderful 95 years old, Mrs F, who had fallen onto her wheelchair. The skin on her lateral lower leg was pushed aside, leaving exposed subcutaneous fat (of which she did not have much) and the fascia of the muscle below. Accompanying Mrs F was her daughter and her husband and Mrs F’s other daughter’s daughter—suffice it to say, it was a crowded curtain-room. Two hours and 30 sutures later, I knew the family’s story: how Mrs F, great-grandmother of four, had been living independently but recently was hospitalized due to difficult to control hypertension, how Mrs F’s daughter and son-in-law wanted Mrs F to live with them, but she fiercely wanted her independence—“I can get around!” and how the same stubbornness that had gotten her through 95 bitterly cold Minnesota winters had now come to this, a crossroads.

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The Specialist in You

This is a finalist in the 2015 STFM Blog Competition


Avelina Sandoval, MD

“You only see what you look for. You only recognize what you know.”

My attending’s words resonated in my mind as I stood there in my short white coat amidst the chaos of the busy trauma bay. It had been an extremely long night.

I was on my mandatory trauma call as a freshly minted third-year medical student. We had heard stories from our upper classmates about what to expect as we left our classroom nest and went off into the hospitals. We would either get to do “doctor-ly” things or we would get stuck with grunt work depending on who was on our team and how busy the service was.

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