Archive for September 2009

Cancellation of Tuesday Tutorial

September 28, 2009

I’m sorry to report that I will not be able to meet with you on Tuesday afternoon to go over last week’s bits and pieces – it seems that after all that excitement with the immunology lecture, my own immune system has gone in to overdrive, and I’m off work, with some kind of ‘flu.  I phoned the swine flu helpline, but all I got was crackling.

Anyway, I’m not up to being at work at the moment, so I’m afraid I can’t teach you tomorrow.  I will ask some of my registrar colleagues if they will be prepared to stand in for me, and I’ll post later to let you know.

Tom Fardon


Lung Cancer Week

September 28, 2009

Phase 2 moves on to lung cancer today – most of this week will be focused on the pathophysiology, diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of lung cancer.  The ITA sessions this week are a little different – we will meet up in LT2 to go through what it’s like to deal with patients who have cancer.  We have video consultations on how to broach the subject of lung cancer, how to break bad news, and how to deal with the emotions involved on both sides of the discussion.  We will also be posting a number of virtual patients to go through, along with a mini-wiki on lung cancer, which we hope to expand with the help of our oncology colleagues through the next few months (In time for exam revision).

There is a wealth of information out there on lung cancer already – as ever, google is your friend.  Here’s a fantastic site from Harvard that takes you through some virtual patients, explains the imaging modalities, pathology, treatment options.  It’s well worth a look.

Other things worth reading:

The Big Lung Trial

BTS: Giving Information to Patients – See Page 7 for Survival Data

The virtual patients will go up on Blackboard soon, and the ITA session DVD will be available up in the ITA suite from Thursday onwards until the end of the block.  If you want a copy of the ITA session DVD, just present me with a blank DVD, and I’ll burn one for you.

Presenting a Clinical History

September 26, 2009

I know it’s a bit American, but this provides at least some structure for how to present a case to a proper grown-up doctor.

Rhesus Disease of the Newborn – Phase 2 Lecture Correction

September 25, 2009

At the end of today’s Hypersensitivity lecture, some one asked about Rhesus positive mothers having children.  I got a little confused and gave COMPLETELY THE WRONG ANSWER!  I thought the question was what if the mother has rhesus antibodies, and has a rhesus positive baby; the question being the baby dies, which is the answer I gave, and it’s the right answer, but not the answer to the question asked.  Thinking back, the question was, what if the mother is rhesus positive, and has a rhesus positive baby – well, if the mother is rhesus positive, any rhesus positive blood from baby 1 at parturition will not lead to antibody formation, because the mother is rhesus positive, thus will see the baby blood as native, not foreign.  Consequently, if baby 2 is rhesus positive, or rhesus negative, there will be no rhesus antibodies present, so reaction.

So.  Rhesus disease of the newborn does not happen in mothers who are rhesus positive, as they will never form anti-rhesus antibodies.  Rhesus disease of the newborn occurs in rhesus negative mothers who have a rhesus positive baby, blood mixes at parturition, anti-rhesus antibodies are made, and then subsequent rhesus positive fetuses are attacked by the antibodies.  The treatment is to give anti-rhesus antibodies to the rhesus negative mothers at parturition, to mop up any rhesus positive blood floating about, so the mother does not make anti-rhesus Abs, and thus has no memory cells to produce anti-rhesus in future pregnancies.

Sorry if I’ve mislead any of you – I was confused by the question!  Hopefully this will have cleared up any misunderstanding.

And yes – I’ve sent the lecture to the medical school to be put up on Blackboard.

As Time Goes By…

September 25, 2009

Doesn’t time just fly when you’re having fun?!  It honestly doen’t seem that long ago I was in first  year, starting my first day in the MSI (and falling asleep during an introduction to ethics…). All of a sudden, I’ve been here five years and the end is getting rapidly nearer!

Having been keeping up with this site over the last couple of weeks, I wanted to add in my own little contribution. Take advantage of the fact that you’re being offered extra teaching, and continue to do so as the opportunities present themselves!

Now, I’m most definitely not saying that you should all become uber-geeks – after all, the late nights in the library and 24 hour IT suites will come eventually, and you should all make the most of your spare time while you can! However, an extra hour or so a week – if even that – will make a difference. You most probably won’t notice it now, but believe me, when you reach your clinical years and certain professors are demanding that you diagnose your patient from the CXR, it will!

I’ve seen that the Thursday lunchtime (1-2pm) meetings in LT1 have been mentioned…these are varible, depending on the subject, but can be really quite interesting. They don’t ask you questions, and there’s always a free lunch beforehand!

The Tuesday morning radiology meetings are also good…you do get asked questions here, but there are always 4th and 5th year students on various blocks here as well, who I can promise you proabably don’t know too much themselves, and it is a good way to become accustomed to interpreting things like x-rays and MRI scans. (Or in my case, figuring out which side is right and which is left)!

Have a look at the weekly departmental timetable anyway – it shows you what’s going on when, and you’ll be more than welcome to attend the various clinics etc.

ITA COPD Physiology Tutorial

September 25, 2009

The ITA COPD Physiology tutorial has been uploaded to Blackboard so you can download and run it on your own PC/laptop.  Follow the week 2 link and you’ll find it in the ITA folder.

Week 2 FTW

September 24, 2009

All the ‘lively’ feedback from week 1 certainly seems to have made an impact on the usage of the site, if nothing else:

Site Stats 2009-09-24 at 23.01.28

Site Stats 2009-09-24 at 23.01.28

That’s over 500 individual visits today, and touching 4000 visits ever.  If we hit 10,000 hits by the end of this block I may have to buy you all a drink!