The Mrs. The Mommy. The M.D.: Reflecting on My Clerkship Experience: Neurology
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Monday, November 26, 2012

Reflecting on My Clerkship Experience: Neurology

From the AAMC Careers in Medicine Clinical Evaluation 

1. Name and Location of Clinical Rotation: 

  • Inpatient Pediatric Neurology at Riley Children's Hospital - 2 weeks 
  • Outpatient Adult & Pediatric Neurology at Wishard Hospital Sub-specialty Clinic, Riley, and the VA - 2 weeks
2. What did I like most about this specialty? 

Neurology has always been of interest to me. I was really excited to learn about seizure disorders and many of the neurological conditions that affect children. In addition, on the adult side of things, it was so interesting to learn first hand about movement disorders, memory disorders, and many other conditions I had only read about previously. 

3. What did I like least about this specialty?

As with my previous experiences, I did not like the not-so-happy side of the specialty. A lot of neurologic conditions do not have such a great prognosis and it was hard to see patients grapple with that. 

4. Did this clinical rotation give me a good sense of what practice in this specialty would be like? 

Yes, I am so happy I got to experience adult, pediatric, inpatient, and outpatient neurology. I was able to gauge where I felt I would find my best fit within the specialty.

5. Did my interests, values, skills and/or personality "fit" with this specialty? If yes, in what way did they "fit"? If no, why might they not be compatible? 

Yes, I do think I would fit well in the neurology community. In particular, I think that I have a gentle demeanor to help parents through the difficult time of having their child in the hospital. Also, I am good at talking with patients about more than just their disease - neurologic conditions crossover into many different facets of a person's life - such as family dynamics, work, and mental health. 

6. What are the possible practice settings for specialists in this field? Which of these settings interest me and do I know enough about them? 

  • Hospital
  • Clinic
  • Academic 
7. What information do I still need to find out about this specialty? 

I would like to know more about hours worked by the attending physicians. My biggest concern is compatibility of neurology with family life and being a wife and mother (my first and most important job...).

8. Has my perception of this specialty changed based on my clinical rotation experience? 

No, I went into the specialty open-minded and I really enjoyed my experience.

9. Did my clinical rotation experience influence the likelihood of choosing a career in this specialty? If yes, how did it influence me? 

Yes, neurology is definitely on my list of possibilities!

10. Right now, on a scale of 1-10, how interested am I in this specialty as a career option? 7

11. Other comments or reflections about this rotation or specialty: 

Overall I thought that this rotation was a great learning experience! All of the residents and faculty were very helpful and willing to teach. I could tell that everyone really loved what they did. Also, IUSM has some of the most reputable neurology faculty which makes post-graduate training here some of the greatest in the country. Super impressive!
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