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Cost of stuff???

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by Starflyr, Aug 21, 2001.

  1. Starflyr

    Starflyr Manic Faerie 10+ Year Member

    745
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    Apr 11, 2000
    Dickinson, Tx
    Ok, I just got back from the bookstore (and SEVERAL curriculum lectures). We are required to have a whole crapload of stuff (not that it isnt REALLY COOL, but...) - stethoscope, tuning fork, oto/opthalmoscope, reflex hammer, pen light... for our "practice of medicine" class. Now that's cool and all, but honestly, does it have to cost THAT much?? I didnt buy the "recommended" oto/opthalmo kit - it was ~$750, but the one I did buy was ~$365. What is up with that??? Im just wondering,,,

    Star
     
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  3. Billie

    Billie An Oldie but a Goodie... 10+ Year Member

    348
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    Nov 30, 1998
    Cleveland, OH
    I skimped wherever possible (cause I am cheap :D ) But a doc I had worked with gave me his old diagnostic kit so I didn't have to buy that. When I got accepted to medical school, family bought me a stethoscope so I didn't buy that. And when it came to the blood pressure stuff, I did not want to buy the set my school had for over $100! So I went online to a nursing supply web site and bought one for about $20. You can get penlights and reflex hammers from drug reps. Are there any conferences you can hit near your school soon? :) I stock up when I go to them, get all the pens and stuff I can!

    Good luck!

    Billie
     
  4. Cobragirl

    Cobragirl Hoohaa helper ;) 10+ Year Member

    1,301
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    Aug 18, 2000
    In residency HELL
    How ironic...I JUST got done ordering my diagnostic kit (a Welsh-Allyn Pan-optic) and BP cuff! $691 later.....and that doesn't count my stethoscope ($151), my tuning forks ($9 & $12), and my reflex hammer ($13), that I bought yesterday. All that and I STILL haven't gotten my financial aid yet (supposed to be out Monday, but since Monday is a holiday...)!

    Of course, all the 2nd years are telling us that we'll NEVER use them (well, once or twice) but my EPC (Essentials of Patient Care) group leader is not only our instructor...he's also the dean of students. He has informed our group that the stuff is REQUIRED (period!)...and of course, he "wants" us to get the super-expensive Pan-optic (he says he's going to make it mandatory next year) instead of a coaxial scope! Unfortunately for me, I have no friends or family in the medical field, so I can't borrow anything...I was just stuck buying it. I was SOOOO looking forward to paying down my credit cards.....ho hum....
     
  5. Jalopycat

    Jalopycat 10+ Year Member

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    Apr 20, 2001
    what the heck do you use a tuning fork for? I'm picturing a bunch of med students warming up for a choir concert.Enlighten me.. :confused:
     
  6. Billie

    Billie An Oldie but a Goodie... 10+ Year Member

    348
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    Nov 30, 1998
    Cleveland, OH
    Tuning fork...a couple of things are hearing tests (look for Rinne-Weber test) Though I am not sure if I spelled that correctly....oops

    And also to check vibratory sense...to see if the patient can feel the vibrations. This is useful if you are concerned that they have some nerve damage.
     
  7. simpleton

    simpleton Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Jul 20, 2001
    Cobra- do you mind me asking what medical school you are attending?
    Just curious!
     
  8. Cobragirl

    Cobragirl Hoohaa helper ;) 10+ Year Member

    1,301
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    Aug 18, 2000
    In residency HELL
    Simpleton, I'm at U of Florida....

    You can find out more about people if you look up their "profile" above their post (assuming they wrote something). Hope this helps!
     
  9. doughboy

    doughboy Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Jul 16, 2001
    I bought all that stuff too during my first year....blood pressure cuff, othalmo-otoscope set, tuning forks, Buck's neurological hammer, stethoscope. Honestly, the only thing I really use now is the stethoscope. The rest is a bunch of nonsense. Why doesn't the school just invest in a set of equipment that you can check out because all the clinics and hospitals have their own equipment. Its just another waste of money in my opinion. Just like renting microscopes....what a joke, can't they just buy their own sets. Its not like its vital to our education. How many times have I gram stained in rotations...zilch. I do get to see trich though.
     
  10. Cobragirl

    Cobragirl Hoohaa helper ;) 10+ Year Member

    1,301
    2
    Aug 18, 2000
    In residency HELL
    No doubt! They even have cuffs and scopes in our standardized patient rooms (since they want to be realistic and all), so I just don't get it. The entire hospital has the stuff hanging on the walls, and honestly, when was the last time a doc bopped you with a reflex hammer (for me, second grade)???? I feel like I've wasted a grand...but then again, I can always go home and practice on the family, right? :)
     
  11. AJM

    AJM SDN Moderator Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    1,117
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    Jun 25, 2001
    Boston
    I bought a oto/ophthalmoscope during my 2nd year of med school -- that was the biggest waste of $350 I ever spent. I've used it maybe twice, and I've now basically stashed it away probably to be never used again. Most med students and residents I know have basically had the same experiences with the ophthalmoscopes they bought. I would recommend that the days you actually need to bring in an ophthalmoscope for your physical exam classes, borrow a friend's -- it's alot cheaper.

    We don't have to buy blood pressure cuffs, though -- that's absolutely crazy! I would again recommend borrowing someone else's on the one day that you learn how to take someone's blood pressure.

    All of your school administrators and preceptors for your physical exam courses of course are going to tell you that this stuff is required, but you really aren't going to be using any of the stuff. Borrow what you can on the days you need it from friends, family members, or classmates, and your preceptor will never know the difference. You can also borrow some of the stuff from people in the class ahead of you who have bought them and have no use for them.

    As far as the things I have actually needed for my own in clinics so far -- I use my stethoscope, penlight, and reflex hammer. That's it. The penlights I have gotten from drug reps (but they're cheap anyway), and the reflex hammer I had to buy (which was also pretty cheap). All the other stuff I never should have bought in the first place.
     
  12. kutastha

    kutastha 2K Member Physician 10+ Year Member

    2,444
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    Jun 24, 2001
    As a diabetic I can tell you that sometimes a tuning fork will be struck and placed on the foot. The patient will be asked to state when they do not feel the vibration any longer.

    And Cobragirl,. What year are you in med school?

    Andrew
     

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