ortho exam

7 Oct

Possibly the most enjoyable test I’ve taken, and I’ve had some fun tests in med school.

At the beginning of the week, we were given a packet of short orthopedic questions/vignettes (answers included), such as: “People notoriously tear their ACLs while skiing.  Why do most of these injuries occur at 2:00pm rather than 10:00am?”  (In case you’re curious, after several hours of hardcore physical activity for the novice skier, the hamstrings are exhausted and no longer willing and able, if you will, to stabilize the tibia when it twists and turns suddenly, so all the force is felt by the ACL.)  To give you an idea of kind of commitment it took to “study” this material, I read and highlighted it once the morning of our exam.  It took me about 90 minutes, and I read about as quickly as I speak (i.e. not quickly).

The test consisted of 10 questions taken directly from these vignettes.  We provided short answers.  We then went over the answers with the course director, quite possibly the kindest orthopedic surgeon you’ll ever meet, and discussed follow-up questions: “What are some means by which we might prevent some of these skiing injuries?  How might economics play a role in their perpetuation?”  We graded our own exams, giving ourselves 0-3 points per question, then added our total to 70, which was our final score out of 100.

Following the exam, I had an hour conversation with this course director on family and career, the topic drifting from family vacations to the advantages v. disadvantages of his sons receiving Gardasil.  One day I might learn to be a little less outspoken.


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