Archive for February, 2010

Only because “phone a friend” wasn’t an option

So in an effort to get this here blog back up and running, I’ve got a few blog posts simmering on various back burners.  A 2009 wrap up, for instance.  That one’s bound to be a goodie seeing as how I just ADORED 2009.  (And by adored I mean, absafuckinglutely hated.  I didn’t care for it, is what I’m saying.  Just to be clear.)  Then there’s the blog post about the 3 week Argentina/Antarctica trip that The Brit and I got back from last week.  That one’ll be great too because it involves steak dinners, tango, hookers, a true Scottsman, penguins, a Ukrainian with a satellite phone, and a pirate.  Maybe there weren’t hookers.  And perhaps there wasn’t a pirate.  But I guess we’ll just have to see how that one turns out.

There are a few other blog posts in their nascency but let’s not get any big ideas.

I’d have churned out some solid writing by now if I hadn’t spent my whole last week studying for my last ABSITE ever.  (There goes my career getting in the way of my blogging again.  The nerve.)   American Board of Surgery In-Training Examination, for those of you not tormented by it annually.  It’s a 5-hour, 220 question multiple choice exam that every surgical resident in the US has to take the last Saturday of every January.  And the questions are not unlike the example question I’ve cut and pasted below (straight out of one of my review books, like verbatim):

A 25 year old woman presents to the emergency room with a dubiously vague set of physical complaints and all you have at your disposal are a dull meat cleaver, some Novocain (that’s expired), and an old boom box playing Journey’s Greatest Hits album on repeat.  Oh, and you haven’t slept in roughly 30 hours.  What is the next best step in the management of this patient?

a)      Call the OR and have them prep the patient for an emergent craniotomy

b)      Start an IV with an old pen (that you dug out of your lab coat pocket) and some tap water

c)       Attach the defibrillator, yell “CLEAR!!” and then give her a good 400 joules  (because you suspect that’s what they’d do on  Grey’s Anatomy)

d)      Administer the Novocain rectally as it will be rapidly absorbed by the rectal mucosa (keep in mind you will have to do this without lube, for there isn’t any)

e)      Run screaming from the hospital

Clearly, one needs to prepare for an exam like this.  And prepare I did.  Aside from the fact that my upstairs neighbor (who’s normally a keep to himself, quiet kind of guy) picked this last week to invite a whole gaggle of children over (true) and conduct a long, and painfully taxing series of tap dancing lessons on his surprisingly acoustic hard wood floors (partly true, the acoustic hard wood floors part), it was a nice solid week of uninterrupted studying.  I’m sure I totally nailed the exam.  I picked answer choice “e” a lot.



The madness featured here is mine and mine alone. It does not, in any way, reflect the madness of my employers, colleagues, patients, nutty family, or my colorful friends. The privacy of my employers, colleagues, patients, nutty family and colorful friends is sacred & deeply respected, so no names. All words Copyright © la cubana gringa, no method, just madness 2006-2010. All comments © their authors. Don't steal; it's not nice. (And my Grandfather knows people.)

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