Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! The Lone Coyote is finally emerging from a 2 month block of brutal scheduling, where she barely had time to eat and pee, much less blog. She is very thankful that no elective surgeries are done over the Thanksgiving weekend and she is not on call, so she now has 4 days off to rest up.

On that note, let me mention one thing I am very thankful for. Pathology Assistants. If any of you out there are applying to pathology residencies, one thing you should try to get a sense of is how much grossing you will be doing in residency. You need a program where the volume is high enough that you will see interesting things, but not where it is so high that you will be grossing all of the time. Grossing can have very little educational value if you are just cutting in small ditzels and cassetting biopsies for hours. We are a very high volume program and have PA support. They do a lot of the small stuff and free us up to focus on learning how to do the bigs. This makes our grossing days sometimes heavy, but doable.

This past week I had a grossing day without PA help due to vacations and it was a nightmare. We are talking over 14 hours of cutting, much of it being of little learning value. Then you ge tto go and try to take care of all of your other work. By the end of a day like that you are just cooked and resentful. I have talked to people who routinely have days like this in their residencies. I cannot imagine doing that day-in and day-out and surviving, much less learning much of value. So be careful. Find a place where you do not just work long and hard on grossing days doing volume, but you do good cases. There is no glory in being a cutting scut monkey.

Okay, off to enjoy the holiday. I will try to be better about posting now that things should improve schedule-wise.


brocasarea said...

the place where am doing internship now i have never seen any pathologists come to OT for specimens!....guess no one cares:(

The Lone Coyote said...

broca--What is OT? Overtime? Typo for OR?

brocasarea said...

operation theatre