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I just started the first week of classes, and I am already feeling behind. So far, we have had lectures for embryology and histology, and we are self-teaching ourselves anatomy.

The anatomy textbook we use is Gray's. I am having a hard time remembering all the details, and it took me 2 hours to get through 20 pages without absorbing all the information. I am doing this hand-in-hand with the learning objectives my school provides, but I am not really getting too far.

I also have embryology and histology classes which I have to review, as well as OPP lectures I have to watch at home. I am struggling to keep up with embryology/histology, because I am so stressed about anatomy. Even things I knew prior to medical school are becoming difficult to understand, and I think that may be due to the stress. I have been crying daily. I don't want to call my parents, because they will just be disappointed at how things are going.

We are starting the back next week, and I can barely get through the first chapter of Gray's Anatomy.

I need advice, because I don't see myself going too far with how things are going and how frustrated I am. I feel as if everyone is far ahead, and I am getting left behind. I did well in undergrad, and I graduated with a good GPA. I was disciplined, studied hard, and medical school is making me feel like I made a mistake thinking that I had a chance of becoming a doctor.
 

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Per my grey-haired physician father, “from the first day of medical school to the last day of residency, I felt behind.”

You’ll get used to it. Chin up.
 
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Alkaidius

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Try different strategies until you're as comfortable as you can get (you will never be comfortable lol). Get on the class Facebook group if you have one and ask how other students are tackling various subjects. They might be doing things more efficiently. For now, just do what you can until you have your first quiz which will give you a more concrete picture of where you stand. Your first month or so will basically be you floundering around trying to get your bearings.
 
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Don't read the book, use the class PowerPoints and clinical supplements
 
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1) Clinical supplement is king. If you know how to use Anki, make Anki cards of the clinical supplement and hit them daily. The anatomy practicals are no joke, make sure you prep hard for them. The Gray's question book is top-notch too.....do all the questions Kulesza highlights, especially the double-highlighted ones.
2) Histology isn't that bad......you need to do the work and draw out what they tell you to in histo lab....assuming Dudas is running histology lab/drawing with Dudas sessions this year.
3) Embryo supplement is real good to reference. Know gestational dates.....like when the cranial and caudal neuropores close, etc.
4) Not sure if it's an option this year, but if you're this concerned, ASK FOR A TUTOR NOW...if you wait too long to ask all the available tutors will be taken.

Yeah it's a like drinking from a fire hose.....but it's doable, you just gotta grind away and keep distractions to a minimum.
 
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Don't read the book, use the class PowerPoints and clinical supplements
I have been reading the textbook and it has been draining me. 6-8 hours on liek 20-30 pages, and that is my FIRST pass on reading with minimal retention. How did sticking to the clinical supplement/just power points help you? Was it enough?
 
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I have been reading the textbook and it has been draining me. 6-8 hours on liek 20-30 pages, and that is my FIRST pass on reading with minimal retention. How did sticking to the clinical supplement/just power points help you? Was it enough?

Yeah I would not use the textbook except to clear up certain topics, I know a bunch of people who did very well in anatomy and none of them used the textbook....at all. I would focus on knowing the clinical supplement and lecture slides COLD and doing the anatomy question book. For embryo I just copied/pasted the embryo notes into Anki using cloze deletions. There was an Anki add on where you could convert quizlet decks into anki, if that's still an option you can find quizlet decks on google and import them to save time. I remember doing that for the clinical supplement.

It seems like the workload is insane but everyone is in the same boat and you will quickly adapt. TRUST ME everyone else is not far ahead. I thought I was going to fail out after the first quiz. I missed more points on the first quiz than I did for the entire anatomy class. Just keep grinding and it will pay off.
 
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PapaGuava

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Check out Histology Guide for helpful pictures to supplement your learning of Histology. It has great images split up by section.

It’s your first week of school and you will adjust but it may all seem scary right now. However you should try to change things up if something is not working.
 

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I felt behind too

I remember my first night I tried to read a 50 page chapter of a histology textbook. I never did it again.

You need way more condensed resources. Some premade Anki decks and first aid will give you the big picture.

see what second years did. There are so many good resources out there don't die trying to read some Eldritch tome. Don't do it.
 
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ortnakas

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I struggled hard with PBL anatomy. I took it six years ago so I can’t offer any useful advice. But know while it might feel like you’re the only one struggling, you are NOT alone.
 
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calivianya

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I never opened a single anatomy textbook and I made a solid A in my anatomy class, and anatomy was my strongest section on my comlex level 1 (also did an anatomy fellowship later which helped, but I credit most of that to studying and learning well the first time).

The first thing I did is did all the kenhub.com image quizzes for learning where things are, generally. The image quizzes are cartoon images and not pictures, and they’re very simple matching quizzes, but that makes them great for a first pass through structures you have never seen before. They keep repeating until you get the structures right so you don’t have to know anything about that body part to learn from the quizzes. I paid for the lifetime subscription and I don’t regret it, but there is a ton of free content, too. I think the quizzes may be behind a pay wall but I don’t remember.

After I ran through the kenhub quizzes, I used a 3D anatomy atlas to really look at where the structures are in relation to other structures in space. Any of the 3D atlas apps will work - I have the Visible Body 2021 (was 2019 when I bought it I think) app and it’s great. I really think being able to rotate the structures in 3D is more helpful than reading or looking at pictures, especially if you’re a hands-on type of learner.

Lastly, I ran through the UMich anatomy questions before all written tests - I got at least a few questions right every test because I went over them (and I don’t go to UMich). They are super high yield and they’re free.
 
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I didnt read the textbook unless I needed additional information to understand the powerpoints supplied to us. I was struggling at first as well until the whiteboard became my best friend. I would read through maybe 10 slides of the powerpoint and then write out the major concepts in those slides. I would then try to write down everything about those concepts I could from memory. Drawing out pictures really helped me as well. I was trying to also understand the material not just writing down words if that makes sense. This is a really time consuming method but its the only method that works for me unfortunately. I am not gifted with an amazing memory so gotta do what you gotta do. [I went from failing an anatomy exam to getting a B on the next]. Also, medical school is going to have a lot of feelings of inadequacy. Youre going to have to learn to push through and not panic. Panicking will stress you out to the point where you are getting frustrated and not studying well. Please get good sleep as well! I wasnt performing well when I was sleeping only a few hours a night. I shifted to sleeping at least 6.5-7hrs and it helped so much. You have to take of yourself so you can function to the best of your ability. Medical school is a marathon not a sprint!

Edit: also do questions when youre getting closer to the exam! I would first use the texas tech/ Umich questions. Then shift to doing the BRS questions. & get in the lab as much as possible if youre struggling. I was in the lab 6 days a week for 2 hours. Go in and try your best to find everything on your own rather than a friend just showing you. Active learning will benefit you so much more than passive learning.

Another edit: Also please dont try to learn every single detail in your first pass. I aim for 3-4 passes of all material before the exam. The first one is pretty basic trying to get the general idea. Then with each additional pass I get more and more in depth.

Also sorry if this advice isnt applicable to your situation. Im not quite sure what PBL entails - my school is more traditional with their curriculum.
 
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BeLikeH2O

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Hang in there OP. I am starting school next week so I will be in your shoe. Clear your head of all negative thoughts. You will figure this out. You got this. God bless you.
 

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I just started the first week of classes, and I am already feeling behind. So far, we have had lectures for embryology and histology, and we are self-teaching ourselves anatomy.

The anatomy textbook we use is Gray's. I am having a hard time remembering all the details, and it took me 2 hours to get through 20 pages without absorbing all the information. I am doing this hand-in-hand with the learning objectives my school provides, but I am not really getting too far.

I also have embryology and histology classes which I have to review, as well as OPP lectures I have to watch at home. I am struggling to keep up with embryology/histology, because I am so stressed about anatomy. Even things I knew prior to medical school are becoming difficult to understand, and I think that may be due to the stress. I have been crying daily. I don't want to call my parents, because they will just be disappointed at how things are going.

We are starting the back next week, and I can barely get through the first chapter of Gray's Anatomy.

I need advice, because I don't see myself going too far with how things are going and how frustrated I am. I feel as if everyone is far ahead, and I am getting left behind. I did well in undergrad, and I graduated with a good GPA. I was disciplined, studied hard, and medical school is making me feel like I made a mistake thinking that I had a chance of becoming a doctor.

Get a tutor sooner rather than later, they have inside info. Use the clinical supplement, atlas, and Gray's question book. Don't read Gray's textbook outright. What you should be doing, if anything, with the textbook is paging through and reading the little boxes on the side (in my day they were green) that have clinical cases/relevant medical info. It'll be much faster, because it's more interesting and definitely shorter than the text.
 
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