Fortunately, medical school is not solely based on bookwork. Labs are intended to solidify the knowledge we get in class and clinical experience are used to tie everything together. This last week we had our first patient encounter.
Objective Structured Clinical Examination
Also known as OSCE, this course provides patient encounters by local actors who give us an opportunity to experience patient clinical interaction. The session can be monitored and recorded by faculty to help the medical student hone in on the challenging aspects of their experience. The exam rooms are equipped with everything we would need to perform a basic exam and we are timed to simulate the practical exam two years from now.
I enjoyed my first OSCE experience as it took me back to my days as an EMT gathering a medical history and executing a physical exam. For the purposes of OSCE, we performed a brief history and physical in 12 minutes to be followed up with a 10 minute SOAP note documentation of the encounter. Overall, time went much faster than I expected, hence the reasoning behind preparing us well in advance for this important exam.
This unique part of the curriculum is used to help us develop an understanding of patient communication, the importance of a complete history, and proper clinical examination. All these points are reinforced by the documentation of our impressions and plan. It is essentially an "ice breaker" into the rest of our career. For now, I think I am still afloat.
Board Prep Question of the Week
A 72 year old woman presents to her physician with the complaint of loss of vision. Visual field examination reveals anopia of her right upper quadrant visual fields bilaterally. What is the most likely location of the lesion responsible for this defect?
A. Left optic nerve
B. Left parietal lobe
C. Left temporal lobe
D. Right optic tract
E. Right parietal lobe
Answer & Explanation