Why do we do it? In a debate with a PA friend (she got accepted, hasn't started yet) she was getting aggravated at how med students had to study for the USMLE and memorize all this crap. She even got to the point of saying that this will be the "downfall of medicine." Three questions: 1) Why DO we memorize all this stuff? Why do we have to know about disease mechanisms and granulomas and stuff when we want to go on to be, say, Radiologists? Is it useless to memorize Osler-Weber-Rendu syndrome and its presentation? Or memorize what disease states Henoch-Schonlein purpura appear in? 2) Don't PA students also have to also study like we do for their licensing exams? I think she needs to get off her high horse as she is going to be part of this "downfall"? 3) Is it more advantageous to be a PA? I wonder about this sometimes... I'm a med student studying for Boards, obviously, but I can't explain it to even my own cohort. I personally feel that there is value in learning diseases and the pathology/pathophysiology relevant to the practice of medicine. What do you guys think?