Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Dengue

Dengue has struck Grenada in full force. The week before the Microbiology midterm, Prof. L, who was lecturing on Dengue, got the Dengue. Some classmates got it. Then this week, my lab partner gets it. Dear God, what is going on here!!

Luckily, we have the milder form so there has not been any fatalities (that I'm aware of) and everyone seems to be recovering... fingers crossed. That is not the case for other areas, especially in Asia, where it can be fatal.
If you have the time, send a report of your local Dengue cases to HealthMap and check it out to see the burden of the disease across the tropics.

In school news, I survived midterms and found them difficult but doable. Afterwards I went to the wonderful CUGH (more on this later) conference in Seattle and spent a few days at home in Boston. Looking at people in the field of Global Health and Environmental health in action, presenting on their various projects was certainly motivating and really reminded me why I'm here. The perspective helped clear my head and made me realize hey - there are only 9 weeks or so left of this semester and this time next year I'll be in clinical rotations! It's amazing how one can lose sight of that in this endless August heat.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

You wouldn't like me when I'm Angry

4 weeks into term 4. This semester is going fast... and you really have to spend every minute just to keep up. My little sleep/workout experiment continues - I managed to consistently get up a few minutes before 6 - though exhaustion has keep me in bed until about 6:15am these days...

One thing I've noticed is the work schedule has really shortened everyone's tempers... or at least mine and my friend Ph. I feel like David Banner - especially yesterday as a variety of small nothingness made me furious - from not being allowed off the bus at the security spot, to searching for the mysterious (and non-existent) poster printer and then being late for lab for the first time only to walk in on a pop quiz (luckily did not count for credit). I still managed to pwn the quiz though. I nearly lost it on the Lab Director when he said I should just hand in a hand-drawn version of my concept maps - after I've been using (with great enjoyment) the software they posted on the website! After explaining my issues with printing on campus, Dr. W says: "why don't you just hand draw it?" and that nearly made me turn green and tear my shirt off. I started to say "First of all...you $!%* ^*#@" but realized who I was talking to and managed to switch it up to "First of all, (catch breathe) this has been a great learning tool! And secondly you recommended it" so we managed to patch things up and I can submit electronically.

Today I am in a much better mood and I think it is because I got up at my normal time and worked out. Yesterday, I had no workout and got up kinda late (6:45 - about an hour behind schedule) so the day started off on the wrong foot. But really, the daily exercise has kept me balanced and focused -- I really think it's kept the stress level down this term... of course, we'll see how it pays off on the exams!

Otherwise, term 4 is a massive amount of very interesting and actually real medicine work. I am putting together a lot of things in my head from past experiences and thinking about future research...I love it :D