Sunday, January 3, 2010


In addition to overindulging in my extended vacation, I spent the last week preparing for the upcoming semester. The ultimate goal is successfully passing board exams, but there is a lot of time between now and then that I have to stay on track.

The End is in Sight

Perhaps anxiety driven or possibly in excitement, I managed to sit myself down long enough to work out a schedule for the next six months. In addition to coursework, I intend to be actively reading review books, utilizing question banks and sitting for mock exams. A weekly plan covering six months is laid out, and for the last month before the boards a daily routine is in place. I don't intend to have much time then and thought it would be best to plan well in advance.

Despite registering for the exams a little late, I have successfully signed up for the COMLEX and will shortly be adding the USMLE to the calendar. Don't make the same mistake I did, sign up for these well in advance as it makes scheduling much easier. Either way, I am facing the reality that I only want to take these exams once due to both the financial expense and the time investment required. At least for now, that's the intention.

The plan, though daunting, is bringing me one step closer to seeing the end of lecture halls and experiencing more clinical interaction. Once again, I am still not certain where exercise and relaxation will fit in, fortunately there are still a few holes in the schedule.

Board Prep Question of the Week

A 6 year old child is brought into your clinic for evaluation of right hand weakness. The mother is unsure of the onset of the weakness, but has been noticing that her child rarely uses his right hand and that the right arm looks unusually limp. Physical exam reveals atrophy of both the thenar and hypothenar eminences, atrophy of the interosseous muscles, and sensory deficits on the medial side of the forearm and hand. Which of the following is the most likely location of the pathologic finding in this patient?

A. Carpal tunnel
B. Medial epicondyle
C. Shaft of humerus
D. Supracondyle of humerus
E. Costoclavicular space

Answer & Explanation


  1. Your study schedule looks very much like mine! But I'm already starting to fall behind...


  2. I would dare to say, just by having a schedule already puts you ahead of the game. Do your best to keep up and be sure to leave time for catching up every now and then. The schedule in the picture has been modified to actually include more than is shown, but it is possible when broken down into smaller tasks.

    I have been on task so far, but much busier than last semester with all the extra reading. It seems to be a little easier to focus my board prep on the materials we are covering in class, thus "killing two birds with one stone."

    Thanks for commenting, keep at it!


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