Friday, May 07, 2010

Moved to Tumblr

See my new blog at

Catchya round.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Four years ago

Four years ago, I started out as an intern at SCGH, naive and not knowing what the future was going to hold. Four years later and things have changed dramatically.

I completed my intern year.

I decided I wanted to do surgery. I did surgical rotations for entirety of 2008 and 2009.

I got married in 2008.

I travelled to Japan and Spain.

I applied for General Surgery in 2009, failed, and am trying again.

I spent a huge amount of money on polaroid cameras, a Diana F+ and film to boot. As well as got an iPhone (my most commonly used camera).

What will happen in the next four years?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Finally starting to settle in

It's been a week now working on the wards, and I think I'm finally beginning to find my feet. I'm getting used to the responsibility of looking after patients, and I'm starting to find work a whole lot of fun.

When I signed up for med school, I always envisaged that I'd be on my feet at work, running around doing lots of little odd jobs - and this is exactly what being an intern has turned out to be. The stress of having to fix up your mistakes has been a little overwhelming at times, but overall it has been manageable.

Yesterday was my first on-call shift. I was covering the wards from 1pm until 10.30pm. Heaps of things happened - apart from the usual calls to see patients who needed med charts written up or fluids charted, I certified my first death, I attempted to put an IV cannula into a patient 7 times (I failed, and ended up getting screamed at by an anaesthetist, who I had to call to help me), a patient pulled his PEG tube out (it's a feeding tube that goes directly into the stomach through the skin), I saw and assessed a confused patient, and I finished all my leftover paperwork from the week. Again, it was a little bit stressful, but well within my capacity to sort things out. And if anything ever went wrong I always had a registrar (more senior doctor) available on the phone to call.

So it's one day off, and then back to work again tomorrow!


Friday, January 05, 2007

Watch out, new doctor coming through

Today was the first day we hit the wards as fully-fledged doctors. We were supposed to be shadowing the intern who we're taking over from on Monday (the first 'official' day), however due to some staff shortages, some of us had to actually do a fair bit of work. My first job is Cardiology, which consists of three alternating weeks between the cardiology ward, the coronary care unit, and the day procedure unit. Because there are three of us interns covering the three different areas, it is meant to be a somewhat cruisy job.

Having said that, being a real doctor is f#cking scary. Charts get thrust in front of your face, medications need to be written and signed off, and every mistake you make is accountable to you - because you wrote your name on it and signed the stupid piece of paper. Life as a student seemed so much easer - there was no responsibility, you could do all the work yet not actually have any responsibility for any mistakes, and you could leave pretty much whenever you wanted to. Now, if I want to leave, I can't. If I mess up, it's my head on the chopping block. If I see a patient, I'm the real deal. I'm the doctor. It's been very nerve-racking so far. However, its still a massive adrenaline rush to be finally doing what I've trained for six years to be doing. I can't wait till I get used to the place and I can start properly enjoying the work. Here's hoping the fire never dies!

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Tuesday, January 02, 2007

First day of work

Happy New Year everyone!

Today was my first paid day as a doctor.

Well, not exactly - I didn't actually do any 'doctor-type' real work today, just sat through a day full of lectures and tried very hard not to fall asleep. It's our introductory week, a week full of lectures and 'revision seminars', or in other words, cramming our brains with stuff we have already learned but managed to forget since our final exams two months ago.

But we get paid for it! Which is a far cry from medical school, where we paid through the nose for similar teaching. Unfortunately, from looking at my roster, I'm not going to have very much time to enjoy using my money. Oh well. I'll just have to use ebay instead.

Most of the new interns at SCGH are fellow UWA graduates. But there were a few unfamiliar faces amongst the crowd - there are three graduates from interstate, coming back home to Perth to begin their new careers as doctors alongside the rest of us. It was a weird feeling talking to them - because unlike school or university, I will probably hardly ever see them again, and thus forming friendships is going to be unlikely. Hopefully we get to know them better through all the social events this year.

Work officially starts in earnest next Monday. My first term is going to be Cardiology. Having never worked a term there as a medical student, it will be interesting to see how I go - iin any case I'm quietly confident in my ability to handle being an intern. There are two other interns working the same job as me first up. Both of them are great girls and I'm really looking forward to working with them and having some fun. It should be a great year.

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Saturday, December 30, 2006

Back again!

Wow, things sure have changed since I last wrote something here. The new Blogger has now been rolled out, complete with labels! I guess this means an end to my (lame) attempt to create labels with Technorati... heh. Anyways, I'll go back and make the changes to the old posts when I have more time.

Speaking of time, time is something I don't have much of these days. I just flew back from Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday and since then it's been go, go, go! I arrived back in Perth at about 4.30pm, and actually managed to find the energy to go post-Christmas shopping! (It was hard to find clothes in Malaysia that fit me or that I liked.) I managed to pick up a few bargains, I'm proud to say. Several pairs of pants and some shirts will complement my working wardrobe nicely.

My holiday in Malaysia was great! Spent a lot of time catching up with relatives I hadn't met in ages, being introduced to their children, whom I had never met, and eating heaps of really yummy food. Four meals each day is standard! Waking up late meant that breakfast was missed, but that was usually accounted for by having a brunch at 11am instead, followed by high tea at 3pm, followed by dinner at 7.30pm, followed by supper at midnight! And in between, we pounded the pavement of the shopping malls. It was a crazy way to live, and to be honest I much prefer the relaxing lifestyle of Perth. There's only so much yummy (but unhealthy) food you can eat.


Friday, December 01, 2006


Next Tuesday I will be leaving Perth for a trip to Malaysia. I'll be away until the 27th of December, so that's pretty much the whole month of December taken up by this holiday. When I get back, I'll have a few days to get everything in order before I start my working life on the 2nd of January!

I'll probably spend most of my time in Malaysia in KL, shopping, eating and just relaxing. It will definitely be a different kind of holiday to the one I had a year ago, when I did a grand tour of Europe. It may not be any less busy however, if my relatives act anything like I remember!

My grandparents live in Seremban so I'll also make a trip over there at some point to check up on them and see how they are. I haven't seen them in almost 8 years, so I'm preparing myself for them to look a lot older than I remember. I guess I must have changed a lot in the last 8 years as well. The last time I saw them I hadn't even begun med school yet.

My mum tells me that my grandmother has some osteoarthritis of her hip which is causing her some trouble. The funny thing is, she is waiting for my 'expert' opinion before she decides whether to have a hip replacement. Haha! And we have two other doctors (my aunt and uncle) in the family as well. I don't want to step on toes so I have a feeling I'll just agree with whatever they have said to her.

Whilst I'm away I'll endeavour to blog about my adventures there and post some photos as well. But internet access may not be easily available don't be surprised if this page is not updated regularly.