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I don't feel fit to become a doctor

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CaliforniaAppli

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...
 

Guillemot

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Well, maybe you should go into pathology. Its difficult to say if you are just a first year. I dont see how that is being doomed unless thats something you dislike.
 

Stellar Clouds

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...

You aren't doomed. First year is really difficult and a lot of people get down on themselves during it. Don't worry, getting nervous around patients is completely fine. You will get over that once you start seeing more patients. You are probably less clumsy/awkward/nervous than you think you are.

There are tons of specialties which don't require you to be great with your hands: IM, family, psych, path, etc.
 

Perrotfish

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...

1) Surgery is awful and procedures are a small part of most medical fields. This isn't dentistry, you don't need to be great with your hands to be a physician.
2) You don't 'think quickly' in medicine. You go over the answer so many times that you learn to regurgitate it quickly, which isn't the same thing. With time you will get there, just let the rest of us did.
3) As a general rule people who think they have poor communication skills or are worried about speaking to others are not the ones who actually end up offending everyone. Like every other part of medicine, overconfidence is what causes most of the problems.
4) I don't know what 'common sense' means in this context, care to elaborate?
5) If you are passing the tests you don't have poor study habits. Also everyone needs sleep.

You are just beginning a training process that lasts for a minimum of 7 years and often longer. Its normal to feel demoralized, like you don't know what you're doing. Because you don't. The training is designed for you not to know what you're doing at this point. What's going to make you a great physician is continuing to strive towards competence. If you keep pushing you will get there. It sounds like you have more drive and insight than most students do at this point.

In other words I would guess you need to worry less. If you have any specific examples of your poor communication/inability to think quickly/lack of common sense that you'd like to share you might get more specific advice for fixing your weak points.
 

Kaputt

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I can completely relate to all of your doubts, and feel that most people can too if they're honest with themselves. Just take a step back, take a deep breath, and realize that it wasn't a fluke that you're here. Tons of people just like you have gone through med school and become fantastic physicians.

Technical skills can be taught to the clumsiest of folks. Quick thinking only comes after you've built your theoretical framework (you're an M1 -- you don't know anything yet, so cut yourself some slack). Communication skills are learnable; you'll get better with every conversation you have with a patient or health care professional. You probably don't lack common sense, you're just being hard on yourself. Everyone needs sleep.

When I was a preclinical student, I was horrified at how little I felt I knew and how incompetent I felt. Then I got on the wards and realized I was doing okay (mostly when I realized how low the expectations were!) It just takes some perspective.

You can do any specialty you want. Don't sell yourself short.
 

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You will be more than fine... You will grow as a person so much and things that u were lacking you will pick up. I am a second and had similar problems / doubts and now it's like nothing was ever there. Am I stressed before exams, am I clumsy, do I get awkward and clumsy yes to all of those. But I get a lot better, and I still see improvement everyday so just keep trying and u will get better. Believe that you can do this and believe in your dream. You got in for a reason :)
 

KLycos

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There are SO many things you can do with your degree, and honestly the most important thing is standardized tests. They will make up for your shortcomings.
 

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Dude, don't worry. I'm not in medical school but I often hear that a lot of medical school students go through the same thoughts.
 

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And then read the second portion of my post. I've closely talked to a bunch of doctors and looking at other posts on SDN (and the above posts), what I said wasn't wrong. Regardless of whether or not I have been to medical school, it's widely agreed upon. Nothing to, "lol" about.
 

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Pathology or Radiology.



Anyways, I'm thinking that you are vastly overestimating your peers.
 

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And then read the second portion of my post. I've closely talked to a bunch of doctors and looking at other posts on SDN (and the above posts), what I said wasn't wrong. Regardless of whether or not I have been to medical school, it's widely agreed upon. Nothing to, "lol" about.

I'm friends with a black person, there is no way I can be racist right?
 

ToldYouSo

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Dude, don't worry. I'm not in medical school but I often hear that a lot of medical school students go through the same thoughts.
high school
 
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Cali2

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Most people feel awkward and nervous around patients as an MS1. Many of your peers who don't look like they are nervous are just better at hiding their feelings, or are overconfident. Things will get better.

It sounds like you had the perseverance and skill to eventually find a spot in medical school, and that's no easy feat. Though comments like "I lack common sense" are a pretty negative thing to say about yourself. If you really feel this way, it may be worth looking into your school's counseling options. You may just need some extra support.
 

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I'm friends with a black person, there is no way I can be racist right?

Like I said, it is widely agreed upon. It's not something so specific that only an actual medical student could answer. A lot of people know the answer to OP's post. You're basically saying I can't answer a simple, common question if I haven't been through the actual experience. If you know about something, answer it. Jeez...

high school

Yes.
 
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ManaPool

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Like I said, it is widely agreed upon. It's not something so specific that only an actual medical student could answer. A lot of people know the answer to OP's post. You're basically saying I can't answer a simple, common question if I haven't been through the actual experience. If you know about something, answer it. Jeez...


That's exactly what I am saying, because you can't.
 

yehhhboiii

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And then read the second portion of my post. I've closely talked to a bunch of doctors and looking at other posts on SDN (and the above posts), what I said wasn't wrong. Regardless of whether or not I have been to medical school, it's widely agreed upon. Nothing to, "lol" about.

Of course it matters. If you haven't attended medical school, you aren't qualified to speak about it. No amount of conversation can be a substitute for the actual experience.
 

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Of course it matters. If you haven't attended medical school, you aren't qualified to speak about it. No amount of conversation can be a substitute for the actual experience.

This topic doesn't even have to be specific to medical school. The reason for these thoughts are the stress, work load, all that. Now for school, most agree medical school is the most rigorous. But the thoughts of "Do I belong here?" and "I'm not sure if this is right for me anymore", can occur doing anything difficult. And if someone asked, "How many years is medical school?", and then someone who isn't in medical school said "Four years", would you say, "You haven't gone through medical school, you can't speak about it"? It's a fact that medical school is normally four years in length and it's a fact that it's normal to go through these thoughts while doing something difficult. I wasn't the only one not in med. school to answer this question but anyway, I'm ending this right here. Pointless...
 
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Kaputt

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And then read the second portion of my post. I've closely talked to a bunch of doctors and looking at other posts on SDN (and the above posts), what I said wasn't wrong. Regardless of whether or not I have been to medical school, it's widely agreed upon. Nothing to, "lol" about.

Pathology or Radiology.



Anyways, I'm thinking that you are vastly overestimating your peers.

No. That's just perfectly normal paranoia. Everyone in the Universe has that.

Lots of pre-meds in this thread, huh
 

TooMuchResearch

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...

You're an MS1. Keep practicing. You'll start to get it eventually. This applies to 1-3 above. You probably have more common sense than you credit to yourself. Sleep when you can. Study the best you can.
 
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yehhhboiii

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This topic doesn't even have to be specific to medical school. The reason for these thoughts are the stress, work load, all that. Now for school, most agree medical school is the most rigorous. But the thoughts of "Do I belong here?" and "I'm not sure if this is right for me anymore", can occur doing anything difficult. And if someone asked, "How many years is medical school?", and then someone who isn't in medical school said "Four years", would you say, "You haven't gone through medical school, you can't speak about it"? It's a fact that medical school is normally four years in length and it's a fact that it's normal to go through these thoughts while doing something difficult. I wasn't the only one not in med. school to answer this question but anyway, I'm ending this right here. Pointless...

I do admit that the thought of "Do I belong here?" is one that you should be able to sympathize with. But I agree with your assessment of your post.
 

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Hahaha high schoolers chiming in on a thread in allopathic to offer advice on med school. Hilarious.

A Canadian HSer to add to it... "Anyway I'm currently in high school (in Canada)"
http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?p=13378164#post13378164

What difference does it make if I'm in Canada or not? :p

I do admit that the thought of "Do I belong here?" is one that you should be able to sympathize with. But I agree with your assessment of your post.

Yeah I guess you're right...

Anyway, I'm never doing that again. :p
 

PlutoBoy

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OP, that sounds like everybody else.

Don't be fooled by the competitive nature of medicine. If someone looks overly confident, he is probably faking it.

You will be fine. I'm glad you are looking into yourself and trying to get better. That's the way it should be.

Cheer up!
 

Perrotfish

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Of course it matters. If you haven't attended medical school, you aren't qualified to speak about it. No amount of conversation can be a substitute for the actual experience.

I'm a Pediatrician with no kids. Very few endocrinologists have diabetes. I have yet to meet a schizophrenic psychiatrist. A lot of what you do as a physician is give sound advice on situations you have no actual experience with. And the advice he gave wasn't wrong.
 

JShephard

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...

I think you can be great. Work hard during M1-M3 and keep the faith. You can do it.
 

Lady Netter

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OP, I have some of the same feelings. I feel like I can do well and pass tests and know things for a while, but I wonder whether I'll actually be able to apply what I know (or even remember it two weeks after the test). It scares me to think I can get through these two years then get to 3rd year and realize I can't do anything. I try not to think about it too much. One day at a time...
 

girlonfire

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I'm a Pediatrician with no kids. Very few endocrinologists have diabetes. I have yet to meet a schizophrenic psychiatrist. A lot of what you do as a physician is give sound advice on situations you have no actual experience with. And the advice he gave wasn't wrong.

This.
 

D elegans

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Don't get discouraged. If you are passing exams you're doing fine.

I think when you get into medical school, it's easy to forget how hard it is to get into in the first place (it takes LOTS of people more than one or two tries) because you're around a ton of smart people who are well-qualified to be there. But the admissions committee wouldn't have let you in unless you were a great candidate, and don't forget that. No one did you a favor.

As far as the communication/physical exam stuff, that will just come with time. I'm an M2, and though we've had several physical-exam related activities, I am nowhere near competent enough to do a physical exam well. I am certain this comes through much, much repetition that you'll get during your clinical years.

Don't sweat it right now. You're an M1; focus on your classes and learning how to study well (M2 is another level up). You'll be just fine.
 

Medstart108

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...

All this can be solved by more confidence and improvement of skills overtime. Everyone has doubts at some point in their career about choosing the right path, but a lot of things change. People make doctoring seem like the most difficult job in the world but its really not that bad. If you never had a desire to be a world class neurosurgeon, you don't have to be a born and bred doctor.
 

ManaPool

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I'm a Pediatrician with no kids. Very few endocrinologists have diabetes. I have yet to meet a schizophrenic psychiatrist. A lot of what you do as a physician is give sound advice on situations you have no actual experience with. And the advice he gave wasn't wrong.

Because you and the others you mentioned are trained professionals that spent years on their craft supported by evidence based medicine and peer reviewed science. I don't think you can parallel that with a douche high school student that talked to some people.
 

Donald Juan

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I'm a Pediatrician with no kids. Very few endocrinologists have diabetes. I have yet to meet a schizophrenic psychiatrist. A lot of what you do as a physician is give sound advice on situations you have no actual experience with. And the advice he gave wasn't wrong.

The difference is that this is a social board with an emotional topic. I'll assume the OP came here looking for empathy, personal and original advice from others, and an outlet to discuss his problems with peers...not an anecdotal consensus of the board trends from someone who has never been in his situation and can't understand it. I understand the OP's feelings because I am a med student, and I think the majority of us felt like him at one time or another. If a patient goes to the doctor with abdominal pain, they're not looking for somebody who has been there and understands their pain, they're looking for someone who can fix the problem, has the appropriate training, and has consulted the literature to diagnose the disease and find the best treatment.

OP, I feel inadequate as a future doctor sometimes, too, but often for reasons other than the ones you listed. Medicine is a complex field. If you got this far (no matter how it came to be), then you will probably find something that calls to you. If not, the bottom line is you will have a decent paying, well respected job, and that is a lot more than most people in this world can say about their lives.
 

laxplayanumba16

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Because you and the others you mentioned are trained professionals that spent years on their craft supported by evidence based medicine and peer reviewed science. I don't think you can parallel that with a douche high school student that talked to some people.

Play nice.
 

robflanker

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I'll assume the OP came here looking for empathy, personal and original advice from others, and an outlet to discuss his problems with peers
Well that was the OP's first mistake.... SDN for empathy? really?
 

dr zaius

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Everyone's physical exam is awkward in the beginning. It takes time and practice to really get a good flow down.

The same goes for patient interviews.
 

ucsfstudents

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You're not doomed. The first step in self-improvement is acknowledging that you have a problem. Work on those weaknesses and over time things should get better. Consider doing some readings on the Myers Briggs Personality Types and VARK learning styles to get more insight. The outcome really depends on your expectations. If you expect to fail, you will. If you expect to make step-wise improvements and succeed, you will. Good luck!
 

darkelven29

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Cannot agree more. Put yourself out there and practice, especially before rotations, and try to work on weaknesses.

1. If you are awkward doing physical exams, practice them on pillows and do as much as you can with preceptors and on rotations. Ask your residents to watch you and give you feedback.

2. If you "lack common sense" and have "poor communication skills," go volunteer and socialize with people.

3. If you get nervous when you're on the spot, raise your hand and answer questions in class (politely and maybe not all the time). Rehearse pt presentations at home or anticipate questions that might be asked.

4. Explore a few specialties, don't just run toward pathology and radiology. See where you are next year and re-assess. You shouldn't make a decision about specialties until 3rd year at least.
 

SpecterGT260

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I am a third time reapplicant, and feel like I barely got into medical school. Don't get me wrong I am so honored to be in school, and cherish the seat I was given. I am still a first year medical student.

However, I feel like I will fail as a physician. Things I learned about myself since starting medical school:

1) I am not good with my hands. I am clumsy, and move awkwardly. ( this makes physical exams awkward and surgery not a option).
2) I can't think quickly,when I am put on the spot, or during stressful situations.
3) I have poor communication skills, and get nervous around patients/healthcare providers.
4) I lack common sense.
5) I need a lot of sleep/ a lot of preparation and have poor study habits.

The only thing I have going for myself:
1) I do decent on standardized testing/ get decent grades but not like the top of my class or anything.
2) Desire to succeed as a physician/ continually improving myself

Am I doomed? What should I do besides going into pathology...

1) The physical exam is nearly always awkward to some extent for everybody. Errybody! This doesn't change until some time around graduation from residency :smuggrin: (made that up, but seriously, it comes with time)

2) Many people feel this way. Has anyone said anything to you? We are typically our own worst critics. Feeling insecure about answers is normal. You are becoming aware of just how much you don't know. wait till next year... it gets worse :eek: Everyone deals with it.

3) I understood this sentence just fine. You are obviously wrong here.

4) That must suck :shrug: oh well

5) So study harder.....


------
1) most people aren't the top of their class (think about it....)
2)Apply this to all of the above :shrug: Sounds like you just need to chill.
 

evilbooyaa

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As an M1, your physical exam is going to be terrible. It will improve.

You're still an M1, work on improving all of the things you mentioned as shortcomings and you'll be fine. Different people need to work on different things.
 
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