Last reply 2 weeks ago
Help! What should Med students know…

…about MS.

This is v short notice for this afternoon – Wed 2nd September. I was only asked last night.

It turns out my GP is also the director of this program – https://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/undergraduate/courses-listing/medicine-accelerated – and I have been roped into giving a last-minute 45 min talk to the 2nd year med students who are doing their neurology module.

It will be about the patient perspective of having a chronic neurological illness like MS. If I can reflect a few different views than just my own, that’d be great.

What is the one thing you really want to get across to trainee doctors (no idea what specialty they’ll be at this stage) about the patient experience of MS? I’ll do my best and if there are any interesting responses then I’ll report back. I think they are at the ‘bunny in the headlights’ stage at the moment.

Thank you.

Dom

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vixen
3 weeks ago

Hi . @dominics. I recently talked with a group of A’Level pupils accepted at medical school. This was to tell them about the referral process etc from a patient perspective. My one bit of advice was, when they are faced with talking to a patient, to imagine how they would want their own mother to be treated/consulted. Also, my biggest bugbear is the dreadful phenomenon of being diagnosed by post which happens a lot, where a patient is copied into a letter sent to the GP. The patient is completely unsupported and should always be in a clinical environment with support when receiving this news. Also, there’s the commonly-known expression ‘at least people don’t die from MS….’ when many people would say that to live daily with a degenerative condition is a bit like a slow-burning death in some ways, as strength, power, energy and mental capacity diminishes.

Blimey, I feel depressed now! But hope it helps…. 🙂


highlander
3 weeks ago

@dominics
Completely agree with @vixen especially with being diagnosed by letter.
And if there is an ms specialist 10 miles up the road at another hospital mention that to them.


dominics
3 weeks ago

Thank you both. It was casually dropped on me last night and he then says, ‘What slides will you be using?’ I suppressed a laugh but have cobbled together a few for them. Your remarks are on them. If anyone else chips in in the next 75 min or so then I’ll add their remarks too.


stumbler
3 weeks ago

The “invisible condition” is a useful discussion topic.

As is the unpredictable nature of MS and unpredictable nature of symptom flares.


dominics
2 weeks ago

UPDATE: Thank you all. We had an excellent discussion. I gave a short 10 min talk then the next 80 minutes were questions.

The diagnosed by letter story really shocked them. I also stressed the invisibility factor.

Next time I hope I’ll get more warning.

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