msbbc833

10+ Year Member
Dec 30, 2008
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Our anatomy lab instructor is the most despicable individual ever. Over the past two weeks I probably spent over 10 hours following him around and going to reviews in preparation for our last practical. They decided to tag the most unusual stuff. Example: I put "inguinal ligament" and it was wrong because the correct answer is "right crus of inguinal ligament". I didn't even know that ligament had a damn crus. Another example, out of the entire pelvis, they put a sticker on a part of the pubis, and I called it "superior ramus of the pubis". Of course its not correct because it was pointing to some tiny line that you can't even see without a magnifying lens, the "pectineal line".

Out of all the reviews and bull**** I went through in prep for this, only a few items were tagged that were talked about. It's like they review all the items they WON'T tag and then try to trick you. I hate this ****ing lab. I got a C on the last practical and now I need a 98 on the final to get Honors. So most likely I will just get a HP. The sad part is my written exam grades are all honors, its the lab that screwed me over. I sincerely believe the lab instructor is dead set on lowering student's grades, some of the **** they do is just unbelievable. Is it like this everywhere or is this unique to my school? Luckily I am honoring the other 3 classes but I feel like there really is no methodology for this class. In all other classes, they lay out everything you need to know, and if you put enough time into it, you will do well. You control your own grade. In lab though, you could spend an infinite amount of time and still end up with a mediocre grade.

Sorry to rant, I really had to let out some steam
 

MrBeauregard

Soon-to-be PGY-1
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Mar 10, 2009
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OP,

I understand your frustration, but this is med school. I had pectineal line tagged on a practical. We had chorda tympani tagged on a practical (just wait until you get to head and neck and see how tiny THAT one is...). Our anatomy professors decided to tag POSTERIOR ROOTLETS! If that isn't obscure, I don't know what is. You can't possibly find a smaller object in the body unless you tag a white rami communicans off of the splanchnic chain or the nerves to the extraoccular muscles or something like that. There were many, many more. And if you don't know what any of these structures are yet, just bookmark this thread and come back to it when you run across them in your class.

I think your frustration lies in the fact that you know the structure, just not the specific portion of it. I found that to be the most crucial part of doing well in anatomy: observation. When you walk up to a tag, LOOK at it. What structure is it on? What part of the structure is it on? Is it tagged with a pin or a loop of string? All of these questions need to be asked before you write down an answer. When you arrive at an answer, give yourself three reasons why you think it is such. You can still control your own grade in anatomy lab, it just takes a lot more work. There are so many structure available to be tagged that you really need to know every single one. It's not that they are tricking you, they are just picking out the tough ones. My professors did that, too. This is part of anatomy, though. Show your smarts and work hard for the next exam.

If you have any more questions, PM me. Hope this made you feel like it wasn't only your school and that all of us go through this.
 

spyderracing32

10+ Year Member
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Jun 29, 2008
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I had pectineal line tagged on a practical. We had chorda tympani tagged on a practical (just wait until you get to head and neck and see how tiny THAT one is...). Our anatomy professors decided to tag POSTERIOR ROOTLETS! If that isn't obscure, I don't know what is. You can't possibly find a smaller object in the body unless you tag a white rami communicans off of the splanchnic chain or the nerves to the extraoccular muscles or something like that.

LOL we had ALL off these (white rami communicans included). That said, if you're really on the ball, they shouldn't throw you for a loop. If you're having trouble with the practical PICK UP A ROHEN ATLAS. Honestly it was the best thing I did for my anatomy grade. I am selling mine (wink wink nudge nudge), but seriously even if you don't go through me, a Rohen is a solid investment if you're having issues with practicals.
 

HelloGoodbye

10+ Year Member
May 26, 2007
128
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I'm sorry for your frustration! My school is the exact opposite...the lecture portion is rediculous, but the lab is relatively easy.

We have a course pack for lab, that lists all of the structures we need to know and the multiple ways we can say it (ie. calcaneal tendon vs. achilles tendon"). They also have specific ways in which they ask a question. For the pectineal line question, they would probably ask "The blue clay lays on what bony prominence...etc." We are also allowed to challenge questions...and if they are reasonable (pectineal line vs. superior pubic ramus) then we get credit.

Anyways, just hang in there! Anatomy will be done soon enough (I only have 1 day left...my anatomy final is tomorrow!). Thank goodness...anatomy is my least favorite class!
 

Mean Muggin

has 1 hell of a stink-eye
Dec 1, 2010
53
1
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Medical Student
Many of the structures tagged on our practical had very specific names and were difficult to see (e.g. posterior fornix of vagina, nasociliary branch of opthlamic division of trigeminal nerve). The difference, however, is that we were told when to be specific. The tag would say "identify this structure. BE SPECIFIC). I think it's reasonable to ask your lab instructor (with the support of your classmates) to include that kind of a hint on your next practical.
 
Sep 1, 2009
135
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You folks bring back some bad memories. Fall, 1970, first Gross Anatomy practical. As if we weren't nervous enough, on the packed elevator ride up to the anatomy lab the professors says "I guess today we're going to separate the men from the boys". Once inside the lab we saw all of rhe tagged cadavers, but not only were the relevant structures tagged, all of the surrounding structures were covered with a cloth, making it impossible to use spatial relationships to correctly identify the structure.

In the pre-instructions, the instructor told us about 10 times, "DO NOT PALPATE THE STRUCTURES". So one of my classmates, who had a pretty good sense of humor said, "excuse me, but is it all right if we palpate the cloth?"
 
D

da8s0859q

Out of all the reviews and bull**** I went through in prep for this, only a few items were tagged that were talked about. It's like they review all the items they WON'T tag and then try to trick you. I hate this ****ing lab. I got a C on the last practical and now I need a 98 on the final to get Honors. So most likely I will just get a HP. The sad part is my written exam grades are all honors ... Luckily I am honoring the other 3 classes ...
I hated gross lab too -- though I felt that MOST questions were somewhat reasonable, if difficult -- but I gotta tell you, if you're doing that well in your classwork, there's no reason to be so frustrated.

By the way, if you walked out of this with a few H's and "just" an HP, I'd defy you to complain to any of your classmates, or to SDN, about it. This isn't like complaining about that one outlying 88 in a semester in college where many of us would relate with you -- it's kind of a different ball game now. I totally understand the lab hatred, but you're doing well overall. I don't know if your med school hands out Honors with every purchase of $1.99 or greater, but I suspect that you've got several classmates who would gladly trade a few grades with you.

If nothing else: preclinical grades, best I can tell as a lowly M2, are at the low end of the totem pole in terms of importance to residency applications.
 

Mace1370

10+ Year Member
Jul 9, 2007
774
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Our anatomy practicals did a similar thing with the cloth covering on a lot of the bodies. Some weren't covered, though.

I think the best way you can learn anatomy is to have a professor point out structures to you on many different bodies. Rohen is great and all, but every body looks different.

Problem is that many professors want you to spend your time dissecting (read: digging through fascia), rather than have someone teach structures to you. It's kind of a Catch-22: do what they want you to do and don't learn anything or ask them to teach you and get them pissed off.

I think whether you have a good or bad experience in anatomy really comes down to how willing the instructors are to just show you everything.
 

CarlATHF

o hai
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Worst one ever: Vincula Tendinum

Most ridiculous tag I've ever seen.

And OP, you need to chill out man. Getting H's and HP's is fine, the world will not end.
 

Jrsharp70

...failure to communicate
Mar 26, 2010
124
0
Status
Medical Student
We covered anatomy in the first 13 weeks, so thankfully I'm done. If it seems insane, it probably is insane. You have to have some crazy stuff, or honors and ranking wouldn't mean anything. Everyone knows retrovesicular pouch, everyone knows gastroduodenal artery. Who gets lateral superior geniculate artery on a knee surrounded by towels so you can barely orient yourself in 60 seconds?

Plus, pectineal line and crus of the inguinal lig are not really nitpicky things to be honest.

Best you can do is learn from it. I suspect you are about finished since you are on the pelvis, but if not, start to get nitpicky yourself. Inguinal hernias are super important, you should have known that. If med school were easy, you wouldn't want to be there anyway.
 

gravitywave

fourth year
Dec 19, 2009
2,078
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OP,

I understand your frustration, but this is med school. I had pectineal line tagged on a practical. We had chorda tympani tagged on a practical (just wait until you get to head and neck and see how tiny THAT one is...). Our anatomy professors decided to tag POSTERIOR ROOTLETS! If that isn't obscure, I don't know what is. You can't possibly find a smaller object in the body unless you tag a white rami communicans off of the splanchnic chain or the nerves to the extraoccular muscles or something like that. There were many, many more. And if you don't know what any of these structures are yet, just bookmark this thread and come back to it when you run across them in your class.
I, too, have seen every one of the above mentioned structures tagged on an anatomy practical. White ramus communicans, check. inferior oblique, check. trochlear nerve, check. But I think OP's complaint is more related to the fact that s/he spent a lot of time with an instructor studying structures/being taught, and then got to the practical and discovered a new level of detail from what was expected.

OP, you can spend a whole heck of a lot more time than ten hours with an anatomy prof and still only scratch the surface of the volume you need to honor anatomy. Just because they didn't mention it to your face, doesn't mean it won't show up on an exam. Here we get a structure list that itemizes everything you'd possibly see tagged on a practical, so expectations are clear from the get-go.

and no, medial/lateral crus of the inguinal ligament is not particularly tricky. afferent/efferent nerves of the pterygopalatine fossa with fiber types FTW!
 
Sep 1, 2009
135
0
Status
Non-Student
Like Mace I believe that Gross Anatomy M1 dissection is a waste of time unless you like the smell of formaldehyde in the morning. Let the prosectors have at it, and for the budding surgicons they should take an MS4 course in surgical anatomy, which is taught very differently than M1 Gross Anatomy, but more relevant to the way they will operate as surgeons.
 

brianmartin

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Nov 12, 2006
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I understand being frustrated but honestly, this sounds like gunner mentality to me. If you are this hung up on whether you get honors in every class I think you need a reality check. No one will ever care that you didn't know "right crus of inguinal ligament".
 
Nov 17, 2010
51
0
Temple, TX
Status
Medical Student
This is how a person who almost failed anatomy but doesn't complain thinks about the practical. What's the average for the practical? Is everyone else having problems? If not, then it's your problem, not the director's. I can only say this because it was my problem, too. I simply suck at identifying things.
Agreed. I've been involved in teaching gross anatomy at a medical school for the last three years and it's been my experience that the students who thought the course was unfair are the ones who can't figure out how to study for the exams. If it was unfair, there wouldn't be the bell curve grade distribution. Gross anatomy is just a difficult course, plain and simple, and you can't take the same approach to it as you do your other courses. I'll never deny it is difficult, but in the end, I've seen way worse structures tagged than pectineal line and crura of the superficial inguinal ring, so I'd cut my losses, be proud of my HP, and focus on the next step.
 

MossPoh

Textures intrigue me
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It isn't that difficult. Really, it is pretty straightforward. It is just more time consuming than about anything else relative to the actual yield you get out of it, especially if you want to do well.

Anatomy is all about repetition. Critical thinking doesn't get you jack in it. I think it has been the least fulfilling class I've had to take so far. I don't even hate anatomy. I'm really fascinated by it actually, but when I was done with the class it took no more than 2 months for me to forget just about every detail in that class. Until you have to apply it to a patient, you just have no idea what is relevant.

The best thing about anatomy was that I established some solid friendships.
 

fahimaz7

15+ Year Member
Jul 18, 2004
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Our anatomy lab instructor is the most despicable individual ever. Over the past two weeks I probably spent over 10 hours following him around and going to reviews in preparation for our last practical. They decided to tag the most unusual stuff. Example: I put "inguinal ligament" and it was wrong because the correct answer is "right crus of inguinal ligament". I didn't even know that ligament had a damn crus. Another example, out of the entire pelvis, they put a sticker on a part of the pubis, and I called it "superior ramus of the pubis". Of course its not correct because it was pointing to some tiny line that you can't even see without a magnifying lens, the "pectineal line".

Out of all the reviews and bull**** I went through in prep for this, only a few items were tagged that were talked about. It's like they review all the items they WON'T tag and then try to trick you. I hate this ****ing lab. I got a C on the last practical and now I need a 98 on the final to get Honors. So most likely I will just get a HP. The sad part is my written exam grades are all honors, its the lab that screwed me over. I sincerely believe the lab instructor is dead set on lowering student's grades, some of the **** they do is just unbelievable. Is it like this everywhere or is this unique to my school? Luckily I am honoring the other 3 classes but I feel like there really is no methodology for this class. In all other classes, they lay out everything you need to know, and if you put enough time into it, you will do well. You control your own grade. In lab though, you could spend an infinite amount of time and still end up with a mediocre grade.

Sorry to rant, I really had to let out some steam
Those are specific anatomical areas of the body. The pectineal line is where surgeons anchor hernial repairs. Either way, both of those tags were in my MS1 anatomy course and my summer course where I taught the PA students anatomy at my school.
 

bamtuba

10+ Year Member
Jul 6, 2006
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My class just finished Anatomy, which was all of 7 weeks; tough to say the least.

We were not tested on the type of detail you are mentioning and our class average on the NBME was around 80%.

You are in a horrible situation and it sucks. Do your best and move on.

Any professor that tests this type of pointless detail does not understand the point of what a medical education is supposed to impart. If you need some minute anatomical detail for a surgical procedure, you'll see it again and would learn it during residency no doubt. The "weeding out" was done in undergrad. This is where they are supposed to prepare you for helping patients and not spend time on meaningless detail.

My opinion, FWIW. :luck: OP
 

2012mdc

Enjoying the Dark Side
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Mar 9, 2010
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Anatomy is the worst class ever. End of story.
Anatomy was such a pain. If it was a separate class that I had to honor and not part of a module I would have been screwed. :luck: