Failed COMLEX I... Please Help

Discussion in 'Step I' started by ThrowAway_77, Aug 11, 2016.

  1. ThrowAway_77

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    I will try to make this as short as possible and would greatly appreciate any input or advice.

    I failed COMLEX I by 5 points. It didn't come as a surprise and I take full responsibility for the failure. My prep time was technically 8 weeks; however, I spent the first 6 of those weeks completely anxious and overwhelmed by the task of studying, which led to some serious anxiety-induced procrastination; I was too stubborn to seek help until it was too late to correct the situation. Failing became my self-fulfilling prophecy. After scoring a <350 on COMSAE B less than 2 weeks out from my exam, I finally woke up from my weird funk and found the fighter inside of me, determined to do everything in my power to rectify my mistake. I immediately met with my school to, quite literally, beg for a few extra weeks to prepare but my request was denied due to the school's stringent policy on completing COMLEX prior to clerkship. My only option was to give it my 200% during that final 1.5 weeks and hope for the best but prepare for the worst. I made huge strides and knew it'd come down to a few points, give or take. I did relatively well in every medical school course, so there was no reason to have allowed this to happen. I realize what's done is done, but the regret is unfathomable and my heart sinks every time I think about all of the doors I've shut to residency programs... I'm more determined than I've ever been in my life to overcome this, however.

    A great deal of the test is a blur, but one thing I do remember is having A LOT of questions on management and always being torn on whether to pick the standard tx as indicated in FA or to go with OMT. Literally every management question made you choose, and a lot were cases in which the patient had a non-NMS complaint or dx (e.g. something GI related, etc). Is it safe to assume "OMM" is the answer they're looking for in those types on questions?

    There were also a good number of questions that seemed TOO easy. Like questions that any undergrad bio major could have easily answered. At the time, while under intense pressure I assumed these were a trap and sometimes chose a different answer from the obvious one. It really messed with my head when I'd go from one question that was beyond convoluted and insane, then the next would be a 1-liner like "which enzyme is most specific to alcoholic hepatitis?" (not actually asked on my exam, but just an example of the difficulty level)... Are such questions really as easy as they seem?

    What is/was your strategy for answering questions you were unsure of? Do you go with the "most common" as a safe bet?

    Lastly, does anyone have any advice on how to best juggle rotations and studying? I'm finding it kind of tough because during the day, all I can think about is how much I want to study, then when I get home I'm exhausted. Not to mention, time is no longer mine and the days are unpredictable, so does anyone have advice on how to make a schedule despite such unpredictability? I really want to maintain some sort of structure and schedule this time around, as that was something I lacked last time. I'm planning to take it in 6 weeks from now, but that is TBD until I get a feel for how demanding my September rotation is. Any ideas on how I go about constructing a tentative 6 week plan, keeping in mind that I currently wake up every morning to get ready at 530am and do not get home until 3 or 4pm?

    Thank you for taking the time to read! Also, I tried to keep things as vague as possible but please let me know if anything I've stated about the exam is too specific and should be deleted.
     
  2. dfib slim

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    Sorry this happened to you. It's not the end of the world though.

    I think I only answered OMM on like 10% of the time.

    Yes

    They are letting you go on to rotations before passing it?
     
  3. OP
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    ThrowAway_77

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    Thank you for your reply. Yes, they allow us continue with rotations without passing it. The stipulation is that you must have at least taken it prior to day 1 of clerkship, but you have until January to pass it.
     
  4. OP
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    ThrowAway_77

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    I guess I should also mention, I already asked if I could take my next rotation off and have it tacked onto my fourth year or rescheduled during vacation time in order to allow for 4 solid weeks of nothing but studying. My school is unable to work with me and our schedules are set in stone. I understand they spend a lot of time coordinating our rotation schedules, so it is what is.
     

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