I haven’t even been a doctor for six full months but I’ve noticed something:
I often like things my colleagues don’t.
On O&G, I loved my clinic days. Antenatal Clinics were awesome because I could show mommies their baby’s heartbeat, or I could pick up on potential dangers and do something preventative about it, or I could pick up that they needed admission, or I could just allay their fears. We often stayed late because the rule is that nobody gets sent home without being seen.That was the only thing I disliked.
I enjoyed Gynae Clinics too, even though most of my colleagues hated them. They were more challenging, took more time to get used to, and had a lot more specialised problems. But I enjoyed it. Infertility workups and abnormal vaginal bleeding workups and don’t forget those critical patients often actually had a ruptured appendix but since they had a vagina “it MUST be something gynaecological.”
Anyways. I realised that liking clinic was unusual when people started asking to swap their clinic duties with me, Conversely, I kind of hated my days on the wards. Post-natal or antenatal, it doesn’t really matter. Those days felt soul-destroying.
Come the second rotation: anaesthetics. I’m getting very comfortable with spinal anaesthesia and even relatively comfortable with intubations, including rapid-sequences. I enjoy the challenge of a difficult intubation, especially when we get to use fun equipment like the glidescope, and I like the various blocks for post-op analgesia. Waking someone up smoothly is quite gratifying.
But honestly, my favourite part of anaesthesiology is the pre-meds: i.e. at the end of a long day when you really just want to go home but you have to see your patients on the next day’s list. It’s a love-hate thing because I’m kind of slow, especially when it’s a complicated list like neurosurgery or paediatric surgery, and I feel like I’m always missing something. And I want to go home. And I hate feeling stupid.
But still, I like it. And it’s the one thing on this rotation which my colleagues hate.
It seems that the in-thing is to want to be a hospitalist. I definitely feel that most doctors I know really enjoy ward-based consultations. It seems like clinics and pre-meds are just those annoying little things you have to do but that aren’t seen as being “important”. Then why do I like them?
So. I think it means something. But I don’t know what.