…to all of the wonderful patients admitted to teaching hospitals who volunteer to be harassed by medical students. Okay, well not harassed, that’s a pretty harsh way to describe it, but to be a model for learning for us. There’s only so much we can practice on each other, since we’re all typically healthy. Being able to listen to different conditions and observe different effects they have on the body… It’s so much more valuable learning from someone than reading and looking at pictures.
So thank you. For letting us practice listening to your heart beats, letting us palpate your body, letting us feel for your pulse. Thank you for being so welcoming even though you’re in a hospital, slowly recovering (hopefully), or even still feeling slightly under the weather. Thank you for sharing your life story with us as we learn how to take histories. Thank you for being patient as we fumble to find your carotid artery, attempt to locate your brachial pulse, and seriously have some hand-eye coordination issues with the blood pressure cuff and our stethoscopes.
And while we’re at it, thank you to the families who agree upon their relative’s last wishes to have their bodies donated to science and anatomy teaching labs. You don’t even realise just how useful it is to have cadavers as models for learning, because it’s hard to figure out where to palpate when you have no idea where everything is on a person, and only have books to go off of. Thank you for following their last wishes, and thank you to the donors who made it possible. It’s an amazing act; I don’t even know if I’d ever be capable of making such a decision. It just amazes me how privileged we are to have people who want to be a part of our education and the future of medicine.
So once again, thank you.