Friday, October 19, 2012

A Dose of Criticism PRN

I used to be very (very!) afraid of our lecturer Dr. K, who always scolds us every time we make mistakes. If we could not provide a clear explanation about a subject, or give him a wrong answer, he will deliver series of stern lectures with comments and critiques.

If I were asked to rank our lecturers, I would say that Dr.K is the most feared among all lecturers.

Dr.Marzuki, Dr.Wan Syahril, Dr.Che Rosle, Dr. Shahrin, Dr.Anis -> Dr.Juita, Dr.Harris -> Dr.Naim, Dr.Kuan, Dr.Nik Fatnoon -> Dr.K

However, after an impromptu Long Case Session with him in the Ward this morning, I had a sudden change of heart.

He was strict and sarcastic as usual, but he gave us advice in between sarcasms. 

Here are few things he mentioned:

+ Don't use 'this patient is a known diabetic..', just state that 'this patient has Diabetes Mellitus since...'. Refrain from using 'noted', 'denied' and 'claimed' repetitively in our sentence.

+ If we meet a patient with Diabetes Mellitus (DM), we should ask about:

1) When and how was he diagnosed with DM?
2) What were his symptoms before he was diagnosed with DM?
3) Did he take any medications? What are the meds? How about his compliance to the meds?
4) Did he have any complications of DM? 

If you meet a patient with underlying DM, HPT, asthma, chronic lung diseases, history of PTB - you must ask details regarding each disease.

+ Since DM and HPT are very very very common in hospital setting, and we meet patients with these diseases every day in the ward, so we should know how to diagnose/manage the patients, what are the complications etc. 

+ What are the stigmata of Chronic Liver Disease? 
Asterixis/Flapping tremor, Clubbing, Leukonychia,  Palmar erythema, Dupuytren's contracture, Bruising, Absent axillary hair, Jaundice, Parotid swelling, Spider naevi, Gynaecomastia, Caput medusae, Ascites, Hepato/splenomegaly, Female pubic hair distribution, Testicular atrophy and Ankle edema.

+ We should be proud of our brilliant Islamic scholar like Imam Syafi'e, he was truly an inspiration.

+ If you know that you are not genius (like Faqih and Nani ;)), you must work extra hard to be successful. Be hardworking.

+ Go to the ward every day. Have a look and clerk a patient, then go back and read about his disease(s). That's how you learn. That's how you should learn.

+ Have an aim in life. What are your goals? Expectations? What do you want to achieve?

+ If we were to compare between medical students who study overseas and us, we are sure to be embarassed by how much we are lacking in terms of medical knowledge.  

I agree that his words are sometimes harsh and hurtful, but personally I think we deserve that. The criticisms are very much needed to make us realise the fact that we have a lot more to learn. We have to improvise in order to become a good Muslim doctor.


I felt like crying.

This time, it's not because I got scolded by him.

It is because I could feel his concern.

Being 'malignant' is his way of showing that he actually cares about us.

Thank you, Doctor.


  1. Assalamualaikum sis.

    I just wanna say that I'm very thankful for your medical entries these past few weeks. Been reading them avidly huhu. Though I didn't catch some of the acronyms.

    Fighting sis! :)

  2. Waalaikumsalam Atiqah.

    Thank you very much for your support. I'll try my best to keep them coming. You could ask me for the meaning of the acronyms, no problem :)

    Good luck to you too, Atiqah :D