The title of this post is, of course, a joke. An extreme exaggeration. An impossibility. Because–in case you had any doubt–no one becomes a medically trained professional in slightly more time than it takes to bake a Thanksgiving turkey.Some things you might actually become competent in in that amount of time. Hop scotch, perhaps. Or throwing a Frisbee.Definitely not the vast oceans of knowledge that are the medical field of study.But as we contemplate moving overseas and being without virtually any reliable medical care, we do want to be as informed as possible. Some dear doctor and nurse friends of ours volunteered their time (and one their medical office), to give us what they could. It was a day full of pig’s feet, long minutes discussing feces coloration, old wives’ tales being dispelled, and big, big words (think ‘acute cholecystitis’–which, when translated, means inflammation of the gall bladder).I’ll spare you the details (Seriously. You have been spared.), but here are some of the most helpful things we learned in the lecture and practicum.
- Learning our ABCs – For those unfamiliar with the wonderful world of medicine, this acronym stands for Airway, Breathing, and Circulation. Basically, the air needs to keep going in and out and the blood needs to keep going round and round. Along with this very basic information came an incredibly useful lecture on the more major infections and maladies, along with tools we can use to diagnose and treat them. Really, the more we learned, the more I realized I need to learn.
- A Crash Course in Medicine – Drugs, drugs, drugs. We were given a broad overview of the most common antibiotics, anti-malarias, pain meds, and skin creams along with guidelines for how they interact with each other and in what circumstance to administer each.
- Listening to Lungs and Examining Ears – Apparently, listening to lungs and examining ears when people are healthy is just as important to listening to them when they’re not. That’s how you know something is wrong! *light bulb flicks on*
- Sutures – By far, the most eye-opening part of the practicum. I’ll break this down into the steps as I experienced them.