Archive for February, 2008

Osteopathic Retards

When I met the other 2 students doing OMM with me, I admit I was disappointed.  They are both 4th year students: one is a boppy female going into Emergency medicine and the other is a classic “dude” going into Internal Medicine.  I tried real hard to be pleasant and get along diplomatically since we obviously did not share the same enthusiasm for Osteopathy.  Today, after lunch, our attending left us per routine since he usually calls his wife, checks his emails etc.  The difference today was that there was another 4th year student eating with us, so the 3 of them were chatting and chatting and chatting about residencies.

At first, I found this sort of chit chat potentially enlightening, but now is just feels completely INANE!  And they kept it up for nearly an hour!  I left after 1/2 hour before I exploded on them.  Part of my tendency towards going ballistic has to do with their discussion regarding Osteopathic vs. allopathic residencies.  I hate it.  I absolutely, positively HATE these discussions.  Fine.  Some of the Osteopathic residencies cannot give some students what they want, but the “dude” specifically sign a contract for an allopathic program at a residency site that had 2 Osteopathic residencies.  They simply require a little more “Osteopathic” work and he was too God Damned lazy and lacking the Osteopathic conviction to do the program.  I wanted to scream and shout that he should NEVER have gone to an Osteopathic Medical school if he was this indifferent!!

And on top of that we treated together throughout the morning and he was hardly effective: soft tissue was too fast, he had no idea what it meant to do a pelvic compression and I could almost hear him making fun of me in his head, and he “finished” too early.  In a way it worked out well because he would go write up the card while I finished up, but he is so aggravating.  I hope I don’t have to work with him again.

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Alert! Osteopathic Super-nerd!!

Last Weds we had marvelous weather including 6 inches of light, fluffy snow by 6am followed by freezing rain and finally drenching rain for the rest of the day.  I, the Osteopathic Super-Nerd, not wanting to miss out on any inpatient OMT during my precious 4 weeks, got up at 5am, shoveled my driveway and drove through the snow at 20mph to get to the hospital.  I was 15minutes late, but my attending was 50mins late!  He had to help his neighbor.  And, of course the other 2 students were not there.  They are 4th year students and, although pleasant, they are not kindred Osteopathic souls.

Because of my dedication, I had the opportunity to help treat 2 babies in the NICU!!  (NICU = neonatal intensive care unit).  The shining moment of the day was when I was treating a 25yo G1P0 at 34wks with twins while my attending was writing the OMT consultation note.  I was almost done with the treatment and doing a lumbosacral decompression using a compressive force.  There was such a huge release that my attending noticed it while ideally chatting with the patient and gave look of surprise to me and I gave a look of glowing delight right back!!  Yeah for Osteopathy!

There have been other times when patients have had to stop the treatment because they were feeling worse.  Those circumstances are slightly discouraging, but at least I get to do so many treatments a day that one “failure” is not as devastating.

The way it should be!

Big BIG sighhhhhhhhhhhh.

I am in heaven.  Working with a DO in and hospital doing OMM.  Life is Beautiful.  Now, if only every single Osteopathic Medical Student could experience this, our whole profession would be revamped.  The thing is, we are not doing rocket science.  First year students could do these techniques after their first few OPP classes.  It gets students comfortable with doing OMM in the hospital, around IV lines, ventilators, urinary catheters, etc.  The most important part is having an attending who is humble (maintain a low profile in an MD world), committed to treating and teaching and have good people skills to communicate what we do with patients, doctors, nurses, etc.  The patients LOVE it once they experience it.  Unfortunately, there is so much red tape to get to the patients that very few students get to do OMT in the hospital.

Dr. Kenneth Graham makes an excellent point in his “OMM Guidelines for the Hospitalized Patient”.  He says that treating inpatients is about prevention (secondary infections, venous stasis, etc) and promoting recovery: restoring physiologic functioning, decreasing sympathetic over-stimulation, etc.   It almost makes me want to cry for joy because we a doing what I’ve read about in so many books, but was too scared to try on my own in the hospital.  Plus, you really should have a doctor to order the OMT and supervise you, but this isn’t always practical.

Osteopathy LIVES!