Confessions of a semi-doctor: (6) Signs!

“A good doctor is a good observer.” Our professors keep saying! In fact, the effort a medical student exerts revolves mostly around obtaining that fine skill of watching. It’s all about scanning your patients for clues, and grasping threads that lead you to a close view of whatever illness they have.. Things referred to as “signs” in every medical book..

Source: Google images.

It’s confusing as you begin learning, for it ain’t that easy to “decode” those “signs”, analyze them and get a conclusion within few minutes, but eventually your eyes end up detecting random passers-by in the street!

The other day, I saw a slowly walking old man with shivering lips. I found myself subconsciously observing the tremors appearing in his hands, then “Parkinsonism” came on my mind! Today, I saw a man with a staring look and protruding eyes, I automatically shifted my gaze to his neck pulsations to find them pounding strongly, then “Thyrotoxicosis” gleamed in my head!!

I know it’s awkward, but if you found someone staring at you, don’t freak out, it might be a harmless doctor trying to figure out what you have! 😛 😛

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20 thoughts on “Confessions of a semi-doctor: (6) Signs!

  1. When you gain more clinical experience, you will be able to see many medical signs walking around in streets, malls, shops, buses ……….You’ll keep fighting your self to stop staring at people’s faces, necks, arms & sometimes legs, but you’ll find it difficult or impossible as you spend a minimum of 7 years obliged to inspect patients trying to pick up the so called medical signs.
    Facies of chronic kidney disease, liver disease, anaemia, thyrotoxicosis, rheumatoid & psoriatic hands, are the most common. Sometimes you w’ll pick rare diseases like osteogenesis imperfecta, fibroneuromatosis & others.
    I still remember the comment of an Obs & Gyne prof. who told that he could’nt stop himself from staring at female hips while waiting in traffic jams to detect those who mostly have contracted pelvis & will deliver by Cessarian section.

    • Oh my God! “staring at female hips while waiting in traffic jams to detect those who mostly have obstructed pelvis & will deliver by Cessarian section.”???!!!!! That would be so awkward!! 😀

      Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

  2. The next time I notice someone staring at me, I’m just going to have to ask them if they are preparing a diagnosis. Might get some free medical care that way, right? 😉

  3. This was very interesting. I have to agree with Tracie- I will have to ask if they want to give me a free diagnoses! Maybe someone can come up with something better than the fibromyalgia I have been stuck with. 😀

    I found your blog through the blogger comment club- thanks for letting me visit.

  4. Love It!!! I wish I could find an insightful doctor like you describe. I worked in an Animal Hospital for years and sometimes observations are all you have to go on. Instincts are helpful when the patient can’t talk. Great post!

  5. I’m an RN and I can relate. When I was going through nursing school I was paranoid about so many of the conditions we studied. Then when you are learn to draw blood, you start noticing stranger’s veins in public! I don’t work in clinical care anymore but I still notice things from time to time!

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