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How important is chemistry?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - DO' started by cutie447, Dec 11, 2005.

  1. cutie447

    cutie447 New Member

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    How important is a strong background in chemistry while actually working as a physician? I know it is important for the MCAT, but is it actually used in practice?

    Thanks!
     
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  3. jbone

    jbone Herro!
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    I hope not alot. I can't remember that crap anymore. After the MCAT, it just fell out of my head. Biochem however, will be usefull. (I think)
     
  4. soul21

    soul21 Member
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    I think it would depend on your specialty. If you were to go into a field like endocrinology you would have to have a pretty good understanding of biochemistry. You would think that chemistry is not that important in lets say radiology but i could be wrong. Remeber that the body is a chemical factory that is constantly going through controlled chemical reactions in order to stay alive, so a stong understanding of chemistry would definintely
    be beneficial to you as physician. You are for sure going to use your chemistry knowledge in classes like pharmacology, and biochemistry.
     
  5. CoverMe

    CoverMe Registered Republican
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    Gen chem is an essential building block of every other chem... acids and bases, pH, titration curves, and a million other things that you don't think about, but actually learned in gen chem. A strong foundation in these basic sciences will never be a bad thing. The fact is, until you get to that cush radiology (or whatever) job, you've still got to get through the MCATS and medical school, rotations in every other specialty and BOARDS... where you ARE going to have to know it.

    Just this block we were introduced to Oxygen dissociation curves, which absolutely require a knowledge of Gen Chem, and Biochem... Do not ignore Gen Chem!!! I wish someone had told me this when I was in Gen Chem... I probably would have worked harder.

    Best of luck!
     
  6. OSUdoc08

    OSUdoc08 Membership Revoked
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    Minimal use in medical school and almost zero use as a physician, unless you are in some specialty that uses it.

    The only chemistry I learned in medical school required minimal background knowledge.

    There is absolutely no organic chem in medical school.
     
  7. Ifellinapothole

    Ifellinapothole Membership Revoked
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    As with almost everything OSU doc states, I disagree. Gen Chem and Orgo may not be explicitly referred to, but they underlie a lot of what is going on. You can certainly be doctor without knowing this stuff, however, if you want to be really good and understand the reason behind things, the basic sciences are important.

    Specific examples so far in first year: 1) Acid-Base as it relates to CO2/HCO3- buffer system 2) the organic structure of Warfarin and Vitamin K 3) electric potential in cell voltage differences 4) osmolarity/osmolality/ osmosis and edema, etc, etc.....

    Again, although you don't need it, it is good to know to make you a more complete physician.

    I fell
     
  8. OSUdoc08

    OSUdoc08 Membership Revoked
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    You don't need to know the structure of Warfarin and Vitamin K for the boards. In addition, the cell voltages and osmolar values are very basic, and do not encompass anything more than can be learned in a general biology or general physics course. In addition, the information is made so it would be understandable to those that did not have the background information, even though it is well known that everyone took the course.

    You may have learned it at YOUR school, but I'm going to rely on our pathology professor for the information I need for the boards.

    Organic chemistry isn't there. Sorry.
     
  9. Static Line

    Static Line America's Guard of Honor
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    Absolutelty right. In addition, O-chem is looked at so hard because adcoms want to look at your ability to learn & reason. The MCAT does that some but so does O-Chem. I would say that so far for me, it has been my ability to reason that has carried me in some classes rather than what I learned in undergrad. However, don't get me wrong, you need to have learnt and retained something from U-grad.
     

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