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Comlex level 1 2010 experiences

Discussion in 'Step I' started by FutureDrO, May 24, 2010.

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  1. blahwhatever

    blahwhatever

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    Are we going to get a list of all the normal lab values we're going to need? Is there anything important they leave out?
  2. luti84

    luti84

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    On COMSAE B, they did not give you lab values for estrogen or progesterone, which I thought was strange. Testosterone, LH, FSH, etc. were all there. Most any other lab value you would need was under the lab vals tab.
  3. theaznfunk

    theaznfunk

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    Hey all, I know we need to memorize anterior Chapman's and sympathetic innervations. Do we need to know all these darn counterstrain points too for the OMM questions?
  4. packitinstan

    packitinstan Member

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    not to hijack the thread but if one is to start to study for boards tomorrow, what would you guys recommend? july 20th date...is it enough time?
  5. InTheMaking

    InTheMaking

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    Should be... 6 weeks is enough.

    Use BRS Phys, RR Goljan for Path, and find a good set of Micro and Pharm flashcards.

    Go through FA section by section and when you get to systems, do the anatomy then the phys then the path then the pharm. Go through the micro and pharm cards often as they will be heavily tested on comlex.
  6. blahwhatever

    blahwhatever

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    If you're a slow reader, I would recommend Kaplan videos. I used the 2007 version. I found that I absorbed more and went through the subjects much faster than reading.
  7. metalmd06

    metalmd06

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    Took the COMLEX today. I have to say that it wasn't as bad as I expected. It was definately easier than Step 1 in terms of question style and answer choices. I was also pleasantly surprised at how well the questions were written. I spent all of my time in Kaplan Q-bank and Uworld. The only exposure I had to NBOME style questions was the free 50 on the NBOME website, an isolated combank quiz and questions in the back of the savarese book. There were only 4 or 5 questions on the test that I felt were poorly written (I wrote comments for a few of them). Otherwise the questions were pretty straightforward. One thing about this test is that even if the question is vague, most of the time if you have an idea in your mind, you can readily rule out some of the silly answer choices they give you. I had about 4-5 OMM questions per block. It consisted mostly of sympathetic and parasympathetic innervation/VSRs, sacral diagnosis, cranial and extremity stuff. There was a lot of neuro on my exam and some of it was tough. Most of it, however, was musculoskeletal neuroanatomy, which is relatively straightforward. I was surprised to have 3 questions about insurance stuff, which I had no idea how to answer (I just made educated guesses). There was ZERO biostats on my test, no calculations and no media questions (if they're even on the COMLEX). There were a few psych and ethics questions which were no problem. Now to the meat of the exam. Bugs N drugs, ladies and gentlemen, bugs n drugs. Like a few other posters on this thread I had a few obscure microbio questions (Clostridium septicum?). I'd have to say the majority of my exam was micro and pharm. There were a few tricky pharm questions, but for the most part it was MOA/Tox. There were a few scattered cardio, endocrine and pulmonary questions, lots of exhibits and lots of Male and Female repro path. I finised with an hour to spare. I don't really know how to judge what my performance was. I made a handful of stupid mistakes but I also got quite a few right that I wasn't entirely sure of (pretty much the same feeling I had after the step). Good luck everybody. I AM DONE!
  8. prionsRbad

    prionsRbad Mooooo

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    Thanks for sharing!!!!! I'm sure you did great! :)
  9. kaisersoze

    kaisersoze

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    metalmd06, thanks for your post... sounds like you rocked it.

    bugs: were there alot of pictures? were the majority straightforward?

    pharm: was it on a variety of drugs? or alot of antibiotics and cardio? was it more on mechanisms vs use?

    thanks.
  10. deadlynavydoc

    deadlynavydoc

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    Hey guys, for those of you who already took the COMLEX and/or somebody who may have more insight than me on this subject, I've been noticing Kaplan only uses very few psych drugs in the practice COMLEX questions, and was wondering if you noticed similarities between the Kaplan choices and the choices on the real exam. For example, countless times I have seen Risperidone, Fluoxetine, Paroxetine, Diazepam, and Clozapine throughout the Psych/Behavioral questions. I don't know if its Kaplan being ignorant/ lazy about the COMLEX questions, or if they are accurate.
    Thanks alot!
  11. pianoman511

    pianoman511 Member

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    I only had one psych pharmacology question and it asked about DOC for OCD.
  12. jkhamlin

    jkhamlin Joe Cool resident

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    I took COMLEX yesterday (6/9). Bugs and drugs, but mostly drugs is what I'd summarize it as. I mean like 300/400 questions!

    Savarese was high yield. Craniosacral, sacral mechanics, Chapman's points, autonomic visceral innervations, facilitation, scoliosis vs type I dysfunctions, dermatomes.

    I thought the path stuff was really easy, but then Goljan teaches at my school, so I get it first hand from the man himself. It's scary how well he knows the boards. He highly recommended we do at least one COMSAE. I took form A and found that the COMLEX was actually easier. High yield non OMM on my test: Ob/Gyn, micro/infectious disease, prostate, middle meningeal artery, brachial plexus lesions/injuries, medical biochemistry, Cheyne-Stokes respiration, diabetes.

    What wasn't represented much was neuro. There were like eight questions if you count the epi/sub dural and sub arachnoid questions, but only two "locate the central lesion" questions. The middle meningeal ones were super obvious stuff. Actually, a lot of the questions were surprisingly straightforward.

    Someone else recommended doing a brain dump of reference material on the white boards they supply during your tutorial time. I did that and it worked well. It almost felt like cheating. :D

    There were a few left field questions that I hope people comment on and get them thrown out. There were also a couple of stupid ones like what muscle energy technique to do on an acute fracture at presentation in the ER. WTF? :confused:

    It wasn't as intense as I thought it would be. I actually just paced myself, skipped all my breaks and did it in 6 hours.

    What was surprisingly underrepresented: Pharm (mainly was related to bugs or CV), psych, neuro as stated above, epidemiology, histo. Maybe they were integrated into other subjects and they just didn't stand out to me, but if they were, then there was no intense knowledge required in them.
  13. blahwhatever

    blahwhatever

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    Thank you! That gave me insight into a few things I had overlooked that I should probably study more thoroughly.
  14. InTheMaking

    InTheMaking

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    Can anyone comment on the amount and depth of virus knowledge needed?
  15. TerrifiedX1000

    TerrifiedX1000

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    Ok, so I take the test Monday.

    Kaplan USMLE Qbank Avg is 55%.
    Kaplan Comlex is 80%
    COMBANK is 68%
    My scores on Comsae: 415, 385, and 402?????

    Everytime it tells me different subjects are poor. Anyway, do you all have any suggestions for these last few days. I am just frustrated and feeling kinda stupid right now.
  16. jkhamlin

    jkhamlin Joe Cool resident

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    I was right around where you are at a couple of weeks ago, and I found it to be much easier than the practice questions. I did COMSAE A, USMLE consult, some practice questions I found on a website, flash cards I made from the stuff in the back of First Aid, and Goljan's question handouts that he gives us. The only ones that I felt real confident about were the Goljan questions. Many of the resources even contradicted each other a lot, which was frustrating. As it turns out, Goljan is right on. Hit Savarese hard (just the topics in my previous post), and the path stuff I mentioned, over the weekend and I bet you'll do fine.

    For mine it was pretty much influenza, hepatitis (mostly HBV), HIV, RSV. Know what the bug is (+or- RNA/DNA, enveloped/naked), immune response, diagnosis, disease mechanism, drugs/MOA. Of course, as with all my points, study everything you can, but hit these first and the hardest, and then use the rest of your time on the other stuff.
  17. TerrifiedX1000

    TerrifiedX1000

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    Yikes! I don't have Savarse (I got a hand me down kaplan Comlex book for free), but I always score well in OMM. Its one of my consistent strengths...do you think I should go buy it anyway tomorrow? I know I need to focus on the bugs and drugs though...yikes!

    Thanks for your help. I really appreciate it.
  18. jkhamlin

    jkhamlin Joe Cool resident

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    Can't say. I don't know what is in Kaplan. If they cover the stuff I said, then you're probably good. If your school has it in their library and you can go look at it, I'd do that. It's literally a handful of pages you need to look at, not the whole book. You can do it in a couple of hours' time, max. The biggest thing is, for the sacrum stuff, you need to be sure you can name dysfunctions without using backward bending test (sphinx test). At my school they teach it that way, but COMLEX uses spring test only for some reason. They'll give you something like seated flexion test or spring test, deep sulcus, shallow ILA, and then ask what the lesion is. Really, that's easy, since negative spring/good spring = negative sphinx = some sort of flexed lesion. Savarese has good practice questions, though, that will help you.
  19. TerrifiedX1000

    TerrifiedX1000

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    Thanks a million! The Sacram stuff I have down pretty cold, so I'm going to focus on the bugs and drugs...that is an area where I could use some work!
  20. singinfifi

    singinfifi Professional Insomniac

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    I can't tell if this thread makes me feel better, or like I'm going to throw up.

    :p

    Seriously though, thank you to everybody who has shared their experiences. :love:
  21. civilleader

    civilleader

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    Haha Comlex kicked my ass....
    I honestly go a hell lot of OMM questions, in fact my third block was almost only OMM hoping that was the experiemental section. That and the fact that they had the craziest cranial stuff too. Also i was suprised to see some qs on worms, that was unexpected.

    Also i was suprised to see some medical policy qs stuff ive never heard of before. Ya i got my ass handed to me today, but then again I was really focusing on the usmle anyways....
  22. kaisersoze

    kaisersoze

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    I am sure y'all did better than you feel. Thank you again to everyone who has shared their comlex experience. I will have my own Tuesday :)
  23. kaisersoze

    kaisersoze

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    civilleader: did you feel the OMM questions were covered in savarese?
  24. singinfifi

    singinfifi Professional Insomniac

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    Last edited: Jun 10, 2010
  25. ppatel1185

    ppatel1185 Pre-Med Student

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    When you guys say bugs and drugs, are you referring to the drugs to treat the bugs(antibiotics, antivirals, and antifungal agents) or are you referring to drugs in general?
  26. InTheMaking

    InTheMaking

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    All of the above
  27. blahwhatever

    blahwhatever

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    Am I at a huge disadvantage if I just kind of skip over the Hodgkins/Non-Hodgkins Lymphomas? I'm having trouble memorizing them, and since I've gone through almost 50% of Uworld and a lot of combank and haven't come across any questions involving these, I'm starting to think they're pretty low yield. Can anyone comment? Thanks!
  28. ouzoo

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    I didn't have any on my comlex test yesterday. I'm taking usmle tomorrow though and I have a feeling it will be included in that test. From UW I remember there being a question in which there was a picture of a RS cell and the point was basically to get you to be able to recognize it. If you have Goljan RR I would look over tables 13-1 and 13-2 because they break it down pretty well. I would also know the translocations associated with Burkitt's and Follicular lymphoma just because I think that could be an easy question if it comes up.
  29. singinfifi

    singinfifi Professional Insomniac

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    Holy crap. You're a warrior. GOOD LUCK!!! :luck:
  30. theaznfunk

    theaznfunk

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    For OMM cranial, has anyone had to ID a cranial dysfunction by whether the eye is receded/protruded, orbits are narrow/wide, rotation of the temporal bone? Or is it just basic cranial patterns?
  31. abbycornish

    abbycornish

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    I heard of people recently saying they had to ID a TMJ dysfunction by which way the temporal bone was rotated.

    Can't help you on cranial though.

    Can anyone who has taken it comment on the depth/emphasis of anatomy? I keep hearing comments that the anatomy was very obscure and difficult.
  32. DocInProgress

    DocInProgress

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    What's a good % to get on the COMBANK questions? (please don't say 99%)

    If i'm getting around a 75% avg on COMBANK, what would that translate in the COMLEX?
  33. blahwhatever

    blahwhatever

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    Are the lab values on the COMLEX arranged in an identical way to the combank lab values window? Trying to figure out if taking a closer look at it before the exam to learn where everything is would be worth it
  34. metalmd06

    metalmd06

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    I think that memorizing the lab values for either exam is a little overrated. I made flash cards for every single important hematologic measure, electrolytes, urine, you name it. I went through them many times and still wasn't able to nail all of them down. Come test day, the lab values given in the vignettes were largely superfluous. All the information you need to answer the question correctly is usually in the vignette. If you have an idea but are unsure, you can always pop open the lab values window. On the COMLEX, they are all in alphabetical order. On the USMLE, there is a search feature that can help you quickly find what you're looking for. I can't say I wasted more than 2 total minutes looking at the labs and most of the time I looked after I already answered the question just to clarify.
  35. InTheMaking

    InTheMaking

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    Wow... why would you even attempt memorizing lab values?
  36. radiodoc99

    radiodoc99

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    COMLEX gives you lab values (normal range) for some questions in the stem. You can also use the lab values they provide in their lab value sheet. no need to memorize but if you do lots of questions you will know a lot of the normal values.
  37. kaisersoze

    kaisersoze

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    Alright, tomorrow is my big day.

    Any last words of advice/experiences? Anyone see repeat questions from COMSAE?
  38. Pegasus1731

    Pegasus1731

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    X2! :thumbup:
  39. PistolPete

    PistolPete :)

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    I also take my COMLEX tomorrow, so anyone that takes it today please post how it goes here! I'll be sure to post my experience after my test (or the day after).
  40. prionsRbad

    prionsRbad Mooooo

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    I'm taking mine tomorrow also! From what I heard from a classmate who took his exam today, there was a TON of repro and I'm ok with that :thumbup:

    Good Luck to everyone going tomorrow!! :luck:
  41. PistolPete

    PistolPete :)

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    How many OMM questions can we expect on this thing? About 40-50 total?
  42. InTheMaking

    InTheMaking

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    Took mine today.

    Lots of OMM, but simple mostly. No sacrum. 1 cranial. 5 or so chapmans points. Lots of spinal levels. Also easy sequencing questions like treat thoracic inlet first, etc.

    Lots of OB/GYN. Mostly OB. Questions that I would have trouble answering after my OB rotation I'm sure. Seemed VERY VERY clinical in terms of OB.

    Micro was very very simple, nothing out of the ordinary. Not that many micro questions for me actually. Sometimes even gave you the answer with questions like this is a group b, beta hemolytic catalase negative. Make sure you remember that Microsporum fluoresces in Wood's Lamp. Only remember 2 things on viruses: measles and an HIV question

    Pharm was simple as well, nothing spectacular there few side effects, few MOA's. Couple weird questions like the mechanism of resistance of ribavirin.

    Neuro was ULTRA simple. Cranial Nerve lesions like tongue protrudes right, what's lesioned.

    Other big things were Cardio (not the drugs, just murmurs and other pathology), and endocrine suprisingly (lots of Thyroid gland stuff, a pheo)

    Heme/Onc had the normal bleeding disorders, vWF, Hemophilia.

    GI had a few meckel's diverticulum questions such as how to treat, what its associated with. Also there was at least 3 questions on crohns and 3 on UC. A couple biliary questions as well.

    Respiratory had some on obstructive lung disease that's about it. No paraneoplastic syndromes etc.

    Suprisingly had about 8 questions that were solely answered by your knowledge of identigying what was in the pictures. And most of those pictures were histology.

    If you have specific questions about the test, ask them and I'll try to answer. I can't think of everything off the top of my head.
  43. singinfifi

    singinfifi Professional Insomniac

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    I just wanted to say GOOD LUCK to everyone tomorrow! (especially 2 of my favorite DCOMers who are taking the exam!)

    :xf::luck::xf::luck::xf::luck::xf::luck::xf::luck:

    ...don't forget to run back here and tell us how it went.
    (please?)
  44. PistolPete

    PistolPete :)

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    InTheMaking, how many OMM questions did you have per block, roughly? 5-6? Where they mostly giving you a presentation and asking for diagnosis, any on how to set up the patient?

    How many anatomy q's did you get?

    Good luck and congrats on being done!!!
  45. InTheMaking

    InTheMaking

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    I had probably a low of 3 omm questions up to 10 omm questions in a block. Most had around 7-8. I probably totaled 60 or so omm questions. No set up questions. They were mostly spinal levels. Suprisingly I had NO SACRUM! I did get one posterior inominate and a superior pubic shear. But like I said mostly spinal levels and then the 5 or so chapmans.

    Anatomy was a biotch. Probably 70% of them were upper extremity. Mostly brachial plexus/ marmu lesions. There was one larynx muscles innervation question.
  46. jasonsq85

    jasonsq85 Future Doc

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    marmu... I've never forgotten it.
  47. kaisersoze

    kaisersoze

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    InTheMaking, thank-you, thank-you for your post.

    Are the repro questions beyond first aid? was it oncology? or more OB complications?
  48. abbycornish

    abbycornish

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    What is marmu?
  49. kaisersoze

    kaisersoze

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    The brachial plexus nerves as you go from top to bottom on the typical drawing: Musculo, Axillary, Radial, Median, Ulnar
  50. prionsRbad

    prionsRbad Mooooo

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