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bag vs no bag?

Discussion in 'Clinical Rotations' started by CaMD, Apr 14, 2007.

  1. CaMD

    CaMD Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Sep 10, 2003
    I'm about to start 3rd year and am decking myself out with all kinds of handbooks and guides etc. and everyone says how med students are the ones who have to have all the little supplies on hand for when they're needed.

    How many of you just load up your white coat pockets versus carry a little bag? I had just planned on going with the coat but the other day I kept having my reflex hammer etc tumbling out of my pocket, so I thought maybe I could emulate some of the other students/residents I've seen and carry a little outdoor-type bag across my shoulders.

    If you do have a bag what kind do you have, what size etc? Any recomendations?

    Thanks for any thoughts. :)
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  3. Bertelman

    Bertelman Maverick! 7+ Year Member

    Feb 11, 2006
    Had a Cooch
    Don't carry a bag. If you can't fit it on you, it ain't worth having with you. Just keep what you need in a bag in the team room, or wherever. No patient needs a stat reflex check.

    Coat pocket #1- PDA
    Coat pocket #2- steth (can be transitioned to scrub hip when you get tired of the white coat and associated "short coat" syndrome
    Coat pocket #3- book du rotation
    Coat pocket #4- patient data sheets, notes, etc

    breast pocket- pens, etc.

    - when i really truly needed it **read: Neuro rotation** I fashioned my reflex hammer to slide into the button hole on the white coat; when I gave up on the white coat, the reflex hammer also slid into my scrub waist.

    Bottom line, the myth that the MS3 needs to have all items at all times is perpetuated by residents and interns who tire of carrying said items. Nowhere on my evals did I receive a comment suggesting I should have carried the pan-optic ophthalmoscope. You should do your best to shine on wards by knowing your patients and their disease, not by being a human doctor bag.
  4. chrisisinnocent

    chrisisinnocent Elbow deep 7+ Year Member

    Mar 30, 2006
    New York City
    Please do not carry a bag, unless you would like to entertain everyone else. Frankly I have never had any need for anything in my pockets except a stethoscope, Maxwell's (rarely used), a pen, some mints, and a small notebook that serves as my accessory brain.
  5. AmoryBlaine

    AmoryBlaine the last tycoon 7+ Year Member

    May 1, 2006
    Minimal is better. My favorite is seeing my M3 colleagues with a stack-o-censuses sticking out of their pocket. Sometimes these things get to be inches thick and cause the pocket to bulge dangerously.

    I don't even carry a reference book. I did during Surg but I never used it. There are computers everwhere. You can call me weak but if your white coat weighs 10lbs you get pretty sick of wearing it by about hour 8.

    I usually keep things in my regular bag and just go get them if I'm going to need something. If your H&P is delayed by 10 min b/c you had to go grab your hammer you can still match into Ortho.
  6. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    I'm surprised no one ever invented a medical utility belt, like Batman. Or maybe a bandolero style over the chest bullet belt for stuff. That would take some of the weight out of the pockets that make the white coat hang so lopsided.
  7. bones4u

    bones4u Residency>>>Med School 2+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2007
    It depends on what rotation you are on

    IM: The medicine docs will walk around with 3-4 textbooks, a hundred and fifty patient notes, 35 pens from every pharm company, two stethoscopes (a spare one just in case), their flash drive around their neck, 4-5 badges for every hospital they have privileges.......... you get the idea

    surgery: Most surgery docs carry just a pen - some of the hardcore ones are still wearing their scrub caps from their first Whipple, others usually just keep 1-2 in their coat pocket. If you're on call in the ER though don't forget the trauma sheers, with the hemostat just incase you find a bleeder when cutting off their clothes.

    Ob/Gyn: A date wheel for their pregnancy, and the latest edition of "OB-Gyn Secrets, how to survive the malpractice suit you most certainly will be involved in". Also carry a good reference book because nothing in ObGyn makes sense, nor will it stick.

    A good little handbook with great information for pedi patients - Its called "Kids are basically little adults". Also carry a ton of stuffed animals. If you can get it to wrap around your stethoscope - you get HONORS!

    Neuro: Your reflex hammer, tuning fork, to test sensation, you'll need something soft, and something sharp - the something sharp can also be used to poke your eyes out if you can't get through the 3 hours it takes to do a full neurologic exam

    Family Med: Carry a PDA - for some reason they love to use PDAs. You can play solitaire on it for all they care, as long as you're using it. Also, carry multiple copies of the following two handouts - first is "Your viral URI, why you DONT need antibiotics" and second "For the love of all that is holy please keep taking your HTN meds"

    Psych: Don't wear a tie - apparently the patients can use your tie to their advantage (they are creative). Carrying a copy of the DSM-IV is a great idea, so you can be sure to rule out depression on the patient who's only been experiencing symptoms for 13 days

    Sub-I: - Leave your dignity at home - you are the full-time scut monkey. Keep copies of skeleton notes and blanket orders, should save you some time and let you squeeze in 30-40 mts of sleep when you're on call q2.

    Honestly, though, on your first day show up with your steth, a pharmacopia, a pen, and a good pocket book for that rotation. From there add and remove what you need - each rotation is different. but remember, its best to travel light, your body will thank you for at the end of the year

    good luck
  8. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic! Staff Member Administrator Physician Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 15+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2000
    hSDN Member
    Who are these students/residents and in what field? I've never seen anything resembling a bag outside of the fanny packs the EM guys and the CRNAs wear.

    Listen to the posters above: you don't need a bag and you don't want to be the dork that carries one.
  9. tomatoattack

    tomatoattack Junior Member 2+ Year Member

    Jul 31, 2006
    If you carry a bag, people will talk about you behind your back and you will be kindof a joke.

    People may even talk about your bag to your face.
  10. tomatoattack

    tomatoattack Junior Member 2+ Year Member

    Jul 31, 2006
    sorry about the repost tried to delete it but couldn't figure out how.
  11. QuinnB

    QuinnB Junior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jul 22, 2006
    definitely no bag...although, some of the plastics guys at my school carry them. It just looks silly.

    You can carry everything you need in your pockets.
  12. Dr JPH

    Dr JPH Banned Banned 10+ Year Member

    Feb 4, 2000
    no bag

    Only neurologists and opthalmologists carry bags. :)
  13. lord_jeebus

    lord_jeebus 和魂洋才 Moderator Physician 10+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2003
    I :biglove: my telescoping reflex hammer.

    Find yourself a Namenda rep.
  14. Dr.McNinja

    Dr.McNinja Nobel War Prize Winner Moderator Physician Faculty 10+ Year Member

    Aug 2, 2006
    No way man. Rock it in style.
    For the high roller
    For the always hungry
    For the budding neurologists (no, not because they have a camera, because they are so damn big.)
    And for the ultimate 80s vibe
  15. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    I carried reflex hammer on my first rotation and then dumped that for just using the bell of the scope. I carried my scope and PDA for the rest of my rotations. When I needed something sharp for neuro, I used an untwisted paperclip. Untwist one end and the other end stays as the dull. Also useful for cold vs hot too.

    The only "bag" I carried was my overnight bag with clean underwear and fresh clothes to make my "escape" post call.
  16. CaMD

    CaMD Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Sep 10, 2003
    Okay, thank you so much for all the responses. I get the message: NO BAG!!bup: :thumbup:

    Much appreciated. I'm terrified of 3rd year but SDN has at least made me realize I'm not alone.
  17. Bertelman

    Bertelman Maverick! 7+ Year Member

    Feb 11, 2006
    Had a Cooch
    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
  18. Bito42

    Bito42 Member 10+ Year Member

    Jan 24, 2002
    hmm...most people in my school carry a bag-- if nothing else that at least for your lunch/snacks and water
  19. Bertelman

    Bertelman Maverick! 7+ Year Member

    Feb 11, 2006
    Had a Cooch
    I think the OP wanted to carry a bag with him during rounds, etc. I sport a bag every day, but it gets left behind in the workroom.

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