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Nature of Pre-Clinical Years

Discussion in 'Pre-Veterinary' started by AuburnPreVet, May 6, 2007.

  1. AuburnPreVet

    AuburnPreVet AU CVM Class of 2011

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    There have been a few threads (in the Allo forum) about med students being upset that they were learning "basic science" that didn't have any obvious clinical relevance... like the minute details of involved cell bio/biochem mechanisms etc.

    From what ya'll have heard, do vet students have the same complaints? Or are the vet-school pre-clinical years of more direct clinical relevance?

    (PS- I would post this in the Vet forum, for the current vet students but... that place is pretty vacant...so I'll ask my fellow pre-veters what they've heard)
     
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  3. kate_g

    kate_g Senior Member

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    I think it's awfully short-sighted to not see that stuff as clinically relevant, myself...
     
  4. AuburnPreVet

    AuburnPreVet AU CVM Class of 2011

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    Oh, I agree for the most part. I guess their complaint was that they were learning every detail about odd things that wouldn't be req'd for clinical diagnosis/treatment - I guess they were getting more of a research perspective... or at least, that is how they felt when trying to cram the info into their heads.

    I'm not agreeing with them - b/c I wouldn't know. Just curious if vet students feel the same way, or .. maybe we just complain less...or? :D
     
  5. silverelf

    silverelf Tufts Class of 2011

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    i just don''t want to learn about DNA anymore....good lord biology has taught me to hate that stuff...every stupid class from the last 3 years has shoved it down my throat...that's the only thing i'll ever complain about.
     
  6. runnerDC

    runnerDC Tufts - class of 2011

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    Agreed. There may be no *obvious* clinical relevance early in your training, but you have to trust that you are learning all of this stuff because at some point in the very near future you will experience something in practice that will bridge the gap, and it will be essential that you understand the basics before you can really make competent decisions as a clinician and fully understand WHY you made that decision instead of another.
    Remember the original "Karate Kid" movie? Poor kid waxed cars, painted fences, sanded floors...little did he know it was all for his own good in the end:)
     
  7. coprevet

    coprevet New Member

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    I'll just be happy if none of the books has a chapter called "Water - the Solvent of Life"! It seems like every one of my prereq books had that chapter.
     
  8. twosoakers

    twosoakers Addict & Western U '11

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    some of the vet students complained at purdue that one of our courses was taught from a 'researcher's' standpoint--the minute details of molecular cell processes (MAP kinases and cascades, retinal cancer mutations, etc.). i never even saw the vet i worked with even lean over a microscope--the techs did the UAs the BC counts, etc. last semester, i spent weekends hunched over a scope.

    but i think it amounts to what type of vet do you want to be? do you want to just do your job, or do you want to translate complicated ideas and share them with the public? if you don't know the minute details, how can you possibly be at teacher? sometimes a grieving client will ask why, and if the situation is appropriate, there is a space for explaining the biological mechanism for the animal's ailment, whether it's breeding/genetics, or something else (which may or may not be a comfort).

    i think it's important to keep up with current research. what if a client comes in knowing more about a condition/recent research out of the wildlife disease association journal than you? you look like an dingus. granted, most vets i know work ten-hour days, and reading is a luxury in addition to taking care of families and actually breathing. but it can be done.
     
  9. kate_g

    kate_g Senior Member

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    Yeah... There have been quite a number of times that I've heard practicing vets (and physicians!) tell a client/patient something that is just flat-out wrong from the point of view of what I'd consider to be very basic biology. (NB. I would never *ever* correct them, even later on in the back room, unless somehow it seemed to be a truly life-threatening situation... most of the time it's just that the client asks "why" and the answer they come up with happens to be biologically implausible BS.) So OK, I'm not your typical client or patient, but I gotta say, when a doc tells me something that makes it obvious she slept through biochem, I'm not exactly brimming with confidence in her clinical skills...
     
  10. Azawakh

    Azawakh Junior Member

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    It is also important to recognize that not all veterinarians are going to be clinicians. There are veterinarians and a growing need for veterinarians in public health, research, and specialty fields. The veterinary curriculum has to prepare you for those options as well should you choose them.
     
  11. jfitzpatri8

    jfitzpatri8 Trying my darnedest...

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    DO NOT FALL FOR THIS PLOY. They tell you it isn't important so that they can get better grades and get higher in the match for internships/ residencies.

    I have been surprised at how much of my undergrad training has come in handy. As I said in another post, I did MUCH more prep than many, and feel that that is the only reason I survived this last (first) year. I took in study groups at my house, me at the whiteboard, explaining glycolysis, Krebs, gluconeogenesis, Nernst potentials, and on and on.

    DNA is necessary. You need it to understand how T-and B-cells are educated in the first months of life, and ultimately how antibodies are formed (and memory cells made). Look up VDJ recombination.

    Biochem is essential. Now, you probably need not remember the name of every enzyme in the TCA cycle, but you will need to know what molecules feed into it, how it interacts with the ETC, what are the main metabolites and what other processes can come out of it. ie pyruvate feeds in, but so can succinate, acetyl-coenzymeA is essential for life, as are riboflavin and niacin, etc... and don't forget that you can know which aa's are essential if you know TCA well enough.

    Cell bio is essential. You need to understand the different types of G proteins in order to know why to give a beta-blocker vs. an alpha-blocker vs. an ACE inhibitor or atropine to a heart patient.

    Try to find a pharmacy class. Learn pharmacokinetics and dynamics before you get dropped into pharm in Vet School. I don't regret it, and neither does my study group (10 strong) who I am teaching it to over summer so pharm doesn't kill us like it did the 2nd years last year.

    Neurophys is my personal cup of tea (I am a neuro nerd), along with regular physio (I took avian phys, repro phys, endocrine phys, renal/ cardio/ respiratory phys, neurophys and neuroanatomy.)

    Even though I HATE to admit it, Physics is important too. I am also glad that I took Calculus I and II, although they very nearly killed me.

    If your school offers you the chance to take Anatomy with the nursing or premed students, do it. you will not regret it.

    Econ will be useful if you ever want to grow up and own your own practice someday. I hated that set of classes, too.

    what else do you see as unimportant? lay it on me, and I will tell you why you are wrong, and what it is useful for.

    J
     
  12. AuburnPreVet

    AuburnPreVet AU CVM Class of 2011

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    I agree with what you said, but your attitude - not so much.
    :thumbdown:
     
  13. jfitzpatri8

    jfitzpatri8 Trying my darnedest...

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    Are you kidding me? I spend over 10 minutes writing a detailed response to you, from the perspective of someone who is where you want to be, and you are going to be as unappreciative as this? I am enthusiastic about helping those of you still trying to get here, and you have the audacity to criticize a playful response?

    Get a grip on yourself, and don't expect any more help from me, AuburnMaybeNeverVet

    J
     
  14. AuburnPreVet

    AuburnPreVet AU CVM Class of 2011

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  15. jfitzpatri8

    jfitzpatri8 Trying my darnedest...

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    So, as AuburnVet has rightly pointed out privately, there are not as many ways to distinguish playfulness from rudeness without face-to-face contact. Therefore, please, everyone on this board: know that I seek only to be a source of (hopefully) useful information for all of you. I care deeply about this profession, and specifically about those of you who must follow me down this crazy path.

    Truly, I apologize for my childish behavior in my last post. I had some personal issues I was dealing with, and took it out on poor AuburnVet. I feel very sheepish.

    I wish all of you the best of luck on this ridiculously complex and confounding journey- one that leads you to an under-appreciated and underpaid profession. For this we sacrifice. For this we live. We do it for those who cannot do for themselves. And because of the absolute rush of the correct diagnosis. We are all junkies. Even AuburnVet, though s/he may not know it yet.

    Have fun in finals, and let me know if there is anything I can ever help you with.

    J


    ps, can I get a thumbs-up now?.......... Anyone?
     
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  17. wivet2011

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  18. jfitzpatri8

    jfitzpatri8 Trying my darnedest...

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    Thanks, wivet!

    And thanks for the wonderful weather you sent across the lake to us today. I just LOVE thunder and lightning storms. For a SoCal valley girl I am really digging this whole "weather" thing. Frozen water comes from the sky, we get to dress up in layers and layers of clothes part of the year, and then I actually today was able to see what "sheets of rain" look like. :rolleyes:. It says this little guy is sarcastic, but I think he just looks thoughtful and playful. Wait... he's me!!!

    Yes, I am talking about weather. Sorry. I never met that before... had only heard rumors of its existence. Just like my husband, who for years was referred to by me as my families' "imaginary friend."

    Good night. J
     
  19. AuburnPreVet

    AuburnPreVet AU CVM Class of 2011

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    You have officially come back off of my "special" list. :thumbup:
    haha. Thanks for your advice on this thread and others.
     
  20. cubs11

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    here jenn --- :thumbup: :thumbup:

    :D
     
  21. philomycus

    philomycus The Tree Rat

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    I agree with ya J.

    It's just like I NEVER understood why we had to learn lots of stuff early on, an then in biochemistry, it all comes togetehr and the light bulb goes off. My kids always ask "Why do we need to know that?!" and I'm not as courteous as your 10 minute effort. I just usually say "Trust me" :laugh:

    :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:
     
  22. jfitzpatri8

    jfitzpatri8 Trying my darnedest...

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    Yeah... but they never believe you, never believe you. (wistful) It's so sad, when you have soooooo much wisdom and it gets squandered away, and then, they come to you, 50 years later (or so it seems) and give you 5 thumbs-up. Then it's worth it.

    Thanks Auburn, too. I needed to be put in line. Anytime you have a question, give me a holler. I'm here (when I'm not working my behind off in the neuroendocrine lab sectioning brains- I get to use dry ice... it's so fun!)

    Amazing the things that amuse us...

    J
     
  23. VelcroSky

    VelcroSky U of MN Class of 2012

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    Well I haven't gone through the vet process yet, but I can see the relevance that these early foundation courses may have. My undergrad degree is in music production and engineering (you know, recording studio stuff) and while at school we had lots of basics that we had to learn. We had to learn how circuits come together to create some neat piece of technology, the physics of sound, how computers work, and so on. At the time it felt like a real pain in the ass but in the end when I was out in the 'real world' using my practical skills, this knowledge really gave me a huge advantage. It's true that I didn't remember probably 80% of the details but I had caught a glimpse of the big picture and that was a valuable tool to have, just knowing how everything was interconnected. So, when something did go wrong I was able to really methodically and efficiently solve the problem.
     
  24. wivet2011

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    Wish the storms had made a stop here first!! All we got was a little light rain without the thunder :mad: Actually, come to think of it, we haven't really had any big storms around here this year which is unusual for WI. (Sorry, I LOVE thunderstorms, especially at night. And watching Twister makes them even better :laugh: )
     

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