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Mango

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Man, does this suck? I mean, do they really expect us to know all this crap!? How is that possible? Yet last year at my school only one person failed out of 160. I have no idea how they did it....

Today, I sat for 5 hours, expecting to cover at least half of biochem. I got through 60 pages of the BRS book. It's 300 pages long! I only alloted 2 days for biochem. How in the hell will I get through it all! Let alone remember it in 4.5 weeks!?

I realize this is really a ranting post, but I am honestly at a loss. As are all my friends. Even after getting great grades in most classes, I feel as though I remember NOTHING! I can't imagine doing well on this test, let alone passing. And that Kaplan Q-bank is so far only making things worse. Are those questions a bit hard, or is it just me?

All right, rant over. I guess I should get some sleep. I have an ass-load of biochem to re-learn tomorrow.....

Mango out
 

fiatslug

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Mango! Long time no see!

Indeedy it does suck. We have Kaplan at my school (just finished Pharm in 3 days, with Dr. Trevor of "Katzung and Trevor"--he was incredible!), and thank god: I wouldn't know where to start. So far the lectures have been great (in marked contrast to the lectures our school offered in the past 2 years...).

Calmness is key. Anxiety will only serve to further petrify. We'll all pass, it's only a matter of inches from here. Hang in there!

Slug out
 

Peeshee

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I think we all feel the same way about studying for USMLE. I am the same way - I make a schedule to study a certain number of pages in a certain number of hours, but it never seems to happen that way..Either I get stuck on something I don't understand and have to review it, or something else comes up...Just keep at it though...I am trying to concentrate on the major subjects....and leave the least high yield for later....
good luck
 

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Studying for Step I was the crappiest part of my life. Taking it wasn't much better either. It was a month of my life that I really can't remember much... you're not alone. But actually when you sit down to take the test, the experience isn't as bad as the anticipation is.
 
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Biohazard

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i feel the same! i cant remember a single thing about biochem...i gave up after a day, i just hope i can memorize some first aid stuff for it...yesterday i was trying to learn the enzymes involved in the glycogen and lysosome storage diseases...needless to say I dont remember anything about it today....
good luck.
 

Peeshee

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What about remembering all the oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes and what diseases they are associated with?? I mean, that is pretty trivial stuff! I have trouble with the glycogen and lysosomal storage diseases, too! I can't remember which enzyme is for which disease, especially for Hunter's and Hurler's!!!
 

Mango

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Yeah, Hunter's and Hurler's?? I don't even remember what those are! But I'm glad to see that all of us are feeling the same about this.

And Slug, nice to hear from you as well. Pretty sweet of your school to bring out the big guns to help you study! We get nothin like that around here. No lectures, just a pat on the back, and a "Call us if you think you need help." Yeah, thanks.

Well, there are several profs that have posted review power points, so I got that going for me. But it's gonna be a long month, that's for sure...

Later fellow sufferers...
 

fiatslug

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•••quote:•••Originally posted by Mango:
[QB]

And Slug, nice to hear from you as well. Pretty sweet of your school to bring out the big guns to help you study!
QB]••••I like to think of it as a nice trade off for not teaching us any of this stuff to begin with. Thank God for Kaplan! I wish I could have just paid for Kaplan instead of the first 2 years of medical school...
 

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Hello fellow test takers to be, I feel your pain.

Biochemistry is a thorn in my side as well. I have only skimmed it thus far and have 2 and a half weeks until the big test. I will probably spend 2 and a half days total on it from here on out, usinf First Aid and High-Yield only. I have BRS but cramming that thing is harder than Chinese arithmetic. I am going to concentrate on the vitamin deficiencies and genetics and also read the Underground Clinical Vignettes. About the straight biochem (Krebs and all that) I am just gonna cram/skim it. Although there will undoubtably be some questions on it, *hopefully* they won't be too bad or I may recognize something. More than likely I will just get it wrong.

As for the other studying I am concentrationg on pathophys, then drugs, then bugs, then anatomy (gotta relearn the upper extremity and the gi blood supply). Behavioral science isn't bad and is worth a few "easy" questions on the exam -they count the same as other questions. Embryology is dead last. Those pharyngeal arch derivatives have to be on eof the most meaningless things we are forced to regurgitate.

Peace
 
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•••quote:•••Originally posted by blotto geltaco:
•Hello fellow test takers to be, I feel your pain.

Biochemistry is a thorn in my side as well. I have only skimmed it thus far and have 2 and a half weeks until the big test. I will probably spend 2 and a half days total on it from here on out, usinf First Aid and High-Yield only. I have BRS but cramming that thing is harder than Chinese arithmetic. I am going to concentrate on the vitamin deficiencies and genetics and also read the Underground Clinical Vignettes. About the straight biochem (Krebs and all that) I am just gonna cram/skim it. Although there will undoubtably be some questions on it, *hopefully* they won't be too bad or I may recognize something. More than likely I will just get it wrong.

As for the other studying I am concentrationg on pathophys, then drugs, then bugs, then anatomy (gotta relearn the upper extremity and the gi blood supply). Behavioral science isn't bad and is worth a few "easy" questions on the exam -they count the same as other questions. Embryology is dead last. Those pharyngeal arch derivatives have to be on eof the most meaningless things we are forced to regurgitate.

Peace•••••You STUDY for classes and you REVIEW for USMLE. You can practically forget the metabolic cycles for Biochem and concentrate on Molecular Biology period. I didn't have a single question on metabolism or vitamin deficiencies.

The "three Ps" Pathology, Physiology and Pharmacology is where your emphasis should be. Everything else is less tested. Gross Anatomy (very few questions)is only tested in a clinical context. (Read the blue boxes in Moore). Know the retrovirus info well. You can review the rest of micro within the context of Pathology. Be able to read graphs in physiology especially flow volume loops in respiratory and pressure/volume loops in cardiovascular.

Get some good sleep a couple of nights before the exam. Read every question and every answer. One answer is more correct than the others so if you pick the first answer that you think is correct, you might miss one below that is more correct. If you can really rock in Pathology, you have a good deal of this exam done.

If you get bogged down in trying to memorize, you are going to go down in flames. Review smart and don't forget to do plenty of practice questions! Four weeks is more than enough time to REVIEW for Step I if you have done satisfactory in your classes. Give yourself a good reward for getting through good review sessions. Work out regularly to blow off steam! :cool:
 

blotto geltaco

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Dr. Belle,

You mean we don't have to know the difference between Hurler's and Hunter's? Woo-hoo!

But seriously, thanks for the words. Unfortunately, while this technically is review there is lots of information to be memorized and recognized. I don't intend to memorize the Krebs or urea cycles or other such low-yield minutiae.

When you say concentrate on molecular biology do you mean genetics and dna and genetic diseases and so forth? Q-bank has MB questions, but they are very scanty and seem very technically oriented (blots and electrophoresis and so forth).

tia
 

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how about niemann-pick, metachromatic leukodytrophy, tay-sachs, gaucher's, krabbe's, fabry's, cori's, von-gierke's, mcardle's, and pompe's diseases. Now which enzymes is missing and what accumulates?
come on, get with the program!
 

Peeshee

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That was a funny post, biohazard....
why don't you enlighten us by telling what enzymes are missing and what accumulates?
This info. just seems so crazy to know...I mean, how many people really have these disorders????
 

Biohazard

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i thought i was enlightening just by telling you that these things actually exist...i dont know anything about them. in fact, i couldnt memorize these diseases even when i was taking the class :)
 
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Mango

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njbmd your post makes me feel much better. I decided to throw my BRS biochem book out the window, and stick with First Aid. I came to the realization that there are some battles that I can choose not to fight this month. And biochem is deffinately one of them! I'm not going to stress over a handfull of questions on crap like purine synthesis, and the urea cycle, etc.

Ahhhh, that feels better.

So I spent today doing nice friendly phys. It was much better than I thought it would be. Although I have to admit, I completely forgot about the existance of things like intrafusal fibers, kinocilia, and golgi tendon reflexes! But it's all coming back.

Plus I found out my school decided to have a lecture review series for us, so I got that to look forward to. Doubt that we'll see any big guns like slug did though.

So what are YOU studying these days?
 

fiatslug

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When we reviewed delta G today (for ~24 seconds), I thought I would shoot myself. I'm deeply, deeply fried. How are you all doing this by yourselves? I'd just flake and read cookbooks all day long... sigh...
 

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Is the delta G you are referring to whether a reaction will occur spontaneously? The only thing I remember about that is that negative proceeds. Of course the question we will see on the USMLE is a clinical correlation regarding "What is delta H, and how is it related to delta G?"

Today in a Board review put on by my school we covered Neoplasia, Hematology, and Cardiovascular in 6.5 hours, and had our OSHA Needle Stick lecture during lunch. I have forgotten every leukemia and lymphoma known to man, but I know that smoking is bad and that the most common cause of epistaxis is digital trauma (nose-picking). :wink:

Back to studying <img border="0" title="" alt="[Frown]" src="frown.gif" />
 

Mango

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Ahhhhhrgh! This is so painfull! I spent 6 hours today on renal/acid base phys. What a pain in my ass. God, I can't even imagine the fun I have ahead - why there's micro-bio and the bug parade to look forward to! As well as all the pharm I failed to learn on the first pass. Ahhh yes, this crap is getting old REALLY fast. And there are 3 weeks left to go!

Fortunately I managed a trip to the bar tonight, and am going home for a great party in Columbus this weekend. No less than 14 of my med school crew will be joining me. It seems that everybody is looking for a break!

Hang tough, we'll make it. And I don't wanna hear any talk of pushing back test dates. I get enough of that from my roommate!
 

fiatslug

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Four words:

Chocolate Covered Espresso Beans.

It's the new crack, and available at Trader Joe's!

Mango, I'm with you on the no-pushing-back thing: my friends and I have made a solemn pact. June 13th, baby, and bring on the pineapple vodka on the beach right after!
 

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Can I ask you guys a question?

In my part of the world, getting USMLE books and info is next to impossible. I felt very lucky to buy BRS gross anatomy used. It must be like the only copy in Scandinavia. So I start reading...

Eh? Small print. No pictures..... Am I supposed to know ALL THAT STUFF? I mean if I knew all that stuff at any given point in life, I'm sure I would have forgotten every aspect of physiology. In fact, I would probably be rolled up in a fetal position, drooling. I'm getting the vibe that basic anatomy isn't really tested that frequently. So do I just forget about BRS? Can I focus on the clinical sections in BRS and just read first aid?

Please. It would seriously suck if I had to memorize all those veins and lymphatic vessels all over again like in 1st year! Any advice?

Thanks!
 

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I can relate to what you're all saying... I busted my chops for Step 1 last year... 7 weeks of Kaplan + 3 months of FULL-TIME studying... day in and day out... price I had to pay for going foreign. Anyway, I remember before I started studying, I too felt the same things... anger, doubt, depression. Then one day before I actually started hardcore studying, as I was lying in bed thining about how "terrible" the next few months were gonna be, I had an incredible moment of insight... like something just "clicked" in my brain...
In that moment, I came to realize just how LUCKY I was. That's right: lucky. I thought to myself "How many people get the privelage... the honor... to study about the mysteries and complexities of the human body AND actually get to eventually make a wonderful career and life out of it?" I realized that the answer was very, very few people in this world do... and I should indeed consider myself fortunate. It's in that moment that I realized that if I wanted to do well... on Step 1 and in medicine and life in general... I had to change my perspective on things and see them in a new light... the REAL light. Taking Step 1 is your inauguration into an elite coterie... into the most highly esteemed and prestigous profession imaginable. This is the truth. Think of it as such, and you'll be happy and excel every moment of the rest of your career... starting with Step 1 Biochem :wink: . Incidentally, I got a 244 :D . Good luck to you all.
 

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•••quote:•••Originally posted by BellKicker:
•Can I ask you guys a question?

In my part of the world, getting USMLE books and info is next to impossible. I felt very lucky to buy BRS gross anatomy used. It must be like the only copy in Scandinavia. So I start reading...

Eh? Small print. No pictures..... Am I supposed to know ALL THAT STUFF? I mean if I knew all that stuff at any given point in life, I'm sure I would have forgotten every aspect of physiology. In fact, I would probably be rolled up in a fetal position, drooling. I'm getting the vibe that basic anatomy isn't really tested that frequently. So do I just forget about BRS? Can I focus on the clinical sections in BRS and just read first aid?

Please. It would seriously suck if I had to memorize all those veins and lymphatic vessels all over again like in 1st year! Any advice?

Thanks!•••••For anatomy, I've heard just know the stuff in First aid. They do ask questions for anatomy that are not covered by first aid, and I've heard that sometimes they ask the most ridiculously specific anatomy questions on the test (eg what nerve lies above the nerve that innervates the parapharyngealcrico extensor muscle :rolleyes: ) , but I would just take the loss and focus your energies on more feasible subjects if I were you.
 
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fiatslug

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Fellow Sufferers:

Halfway through Kaplan lectures, 3 weeks from my test date, I'm having thoughts (in spite of my post one day ago!) about pushing back my date from June 13th until somewhere around the 24th. The lectures are incredible, but they are knocking me on my butt in terms of starting to study after eight hours of sitting. It's truly amazing to knock out all of pharmacology in 3 days! The professors are alarmingly good teachers, and the Kaplan notes are, in general, fantastic. Micro is a particular winner. Anyway, I'm feeling like I don't have enough time to go over what we've done in class, and if I had an extra week and a half to study in a non-panicked way, I might feel better about it. I should add I'm just not one of those 12-14 hour study day kind of folks--I'm just not wired that way. I figure this way I could sort of do things at my own pace, which includes cooking, spending time with my boyfriend, hiking, etc... It's desperate sad how I come to this board looking for total strangers to tell me the sensible thing for me to do, but I'd apprectiate any suggestions, yeas and nays and reasons why. I'm quite sure I'll pass if I take it on schedule, and if I had the gunning gene in me, I'd be making more efficient (not, I humbly submit, better, at least in any holisitic sense) use of the time I have now, but I know myself and my limits, and I'm at peace. I lack the stamina for the intellectual myopia this kind of study requires, and I'm confident I don't want to be That Sort of Bear.

Picked last for kickball teams in boot camp,

Slug out
 
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njbmd

•••quote:•••Originally posted by fiatslug:
•Fellow Sufferers:

Halfway through Kaplan lectures, 3 weeks from my test date, I'm having thoughts (in spite of my post one day ago!) about pushing back my date from June 13th until somewhere around the 24th. The lectures are incredible, but they are knocking me on my butt in terms of starting to study after eight hours of sitting. It's truly amazing to knock out all of pharmacology in 3 days! The professors are alarmingly good teachers, and the Kaplan notes are, in general, fantastic. Micro is a particular winner. Anyway, I'm feeling like I don't have enough time to go over what we've done in class, and if I had an extra week and a half to study in a non-panicked way, I might feel better about it. I should add I'm just not one of those 12-14 hour study day kind of folks--I'm just not wired that way. I figure this way I could sort of do things at my own pace, which includes cooking, spending time with my boyfriend, hiking, etc... It's desperate sad how I come to this board looking for total strangers to tell me the sensible thing for me to do, but I'd apprectiate any suggestions, yeas and nays and reasons why. I'm quite sure I'll pass if I take it on schedule, and if I had the gunning gene in me, I'd be making more efficient (not, I humbly submit, better, at least in any holisitic sense) use of the time I have now, but I know myself and my limits, and I'm at peace. I lack the stamina for the intellectual myopia this kind of study requires, and I'm confident I don't want to be That Sort of Bear.

Picked last for kickball teams in boot camp,

Slug out•••••Hi there,

As you are sitting there in your Kaplan classes, are you feeling like you can apply what you are reviewing? This is where doing practice questions are most helpful. Are you consistantly missing something? If so, go back and review that "something" again. If not, keep on pushing forward.

Doing well on Step I means taking your basic preclinical science and applying it to clinical situations. This is less about rote regurg and more about getting to the point of the question and getting to the most correct answer.

Work on your weaknesses first and keep your strengths solid. Keep your confidence up and study positive. I know a couple of people who talked themselves into failing this exam when they knew the material. Fortunately for most people, there are enough questions on the real thing to allow you to get under control and get the job done.

These exams are a process and part of your training to be a physician. Seize the day and get to the business of moving forward! Good luck to all of you. :) As I look back, I learned so much from just going through the process while keeping the goal in sight. :cool:
 

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fiatslug,
If you don't have anything else that you need to do before June 24th, I don't see anything wrong with pushing your test date back. Just be aware that it has become difficult to change your date in a lot of locations because some sites are already completely booked for the next month or so. I actually wanted to push my test date back a few days, but discovered that I would have to push it back an entire week or leave it as it was so I decided to keep my original test date.
 

fiatslug

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ckent, I'm worrying about losing my current appointment if I make another by phone. Do you know if the Prometric (800 633 3926, if anyone cares; <a href="http://www.2test.com)" target="_blank">www.2test.com)</a> phone system allows you to see what's available before you drop your current exam time? Or can you find out availability online?
 

Peeshee

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Hello, just wondering how you guys are coping, as you are studying...Right now, I am doing pharm., and it is going slowly, but I figure if I go over it many, many times, eventually, I will be able to remember the majority of the drugs. Repetition is the key, I think...
Well, good luck to everyone who is studying, and let us know how you are doing!
 

ckent

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fiatslug,
when I tried to change my date, the automated system told me that my date was filled up and told the the only avaiable date that I could change to for that month. I don't know if you will have problems changing back if you call and change your date, I imagine that the slot that you left would still be open if you cwanted to change back in a minute or two after chaning, but I would make sure that you want to changebefore you actually change dates just be sure.

As for where I am in studying for the USMLE, I just cracked open my BRS pathology book and I am planning on going chapter by chapter. I have less then four weeks to go and I still haven't covered all of the major organ pathologies, micro, or any pharm. I have gone "over" anatomy, neuroanatomy, physio and biochem. I am getting killed in the Q bank questions (50s-60s) though for physio and biochem, didn't even want to touch the anatomy questions because I know 0 of anatomy and neuroanatomy. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Frown]" src="frown.gif" />
 

fiatslug

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Looks like I won't be changing my date (at least that's the current consensus of the voices in my head); people keep telling me "you peak right after Kaplan," and I don't want to lose any more of these "temporary files."

I continue to be amazed and impressed by those of you doing this on your own (which I know compiles a great majority of USMLE takers)--I completely lack the discipline to do that! We have a 3 day study break now, and come back to Physio, Behavioral Sci and Path to finish up by next Friday. If anyone's having trouble with Micro, I recommed the Mirco notes from Kaplan (their Neuro notes are also great, and serve as the secret alternative subtext to the godawful Neuro book & course at my school). Louise Hawley (of High Yield and BRS) wrote the Micro notes, and did our lectures, and everything she said and wrote is pure gold! The tables in there are fantastic.

Anyone got any good mnemonics?
 

Mango

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Well, after flipping through Wheater's and First Aid, I have officially decided to blow off histology, and am considering doing the same for biochem! But I did finish phys, gross and behavioral, so I feel a little better. Today I have a date with embryology - man how I enjoy looking at pictures of deformed babies. Sigh.

So slug, what was that comment about asking "a group of total strangers" for advice? I mean come on, we've known each other (completely ananomously) for two years! Where's the love? :wink: Man, those two years have flown by.

Anyhow, as for moving dates, yeah yeah. I've thought about it too. But so far I'm sticking with the 14th. I have plans to be drunk on a beach on the 15th, and I don't want that to change! And as for the studying on our own thing, I guess it's just the norm 'round these here parts. I don't know anyone who is taking Kaplan. We all have the Q bank though. And thank god for that thing. Anyhow, I just motivate myself by realizing that I HAVE to do this. And that seems to do the trick.

Speaking of studying, I'd better get back to it. The branchial arches are calling...
 

ckent

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Anybody else starting to get panic attacks about not having enough time to learn everything? :( I am going chapter by chapter in BRS pathology taking notes on every chapter, but I am only on p. 150 and the freakin book is ~390 pages long! I have been at it since Sunday too, and I planned on finishing pathophys by this Saturday, but now I don't know if I can do this and do all the Q bank questions they have for pathophys. My whole schedule got messed up when I went away for a wedding and ended up spending a full week on biochem, talk about overkill. And of course I still don't know any of the anatomy and neuroanatomy, and embryo that I "covered" already. And I still haven't touched micro or pharm yet either, two of the most challenging subjects for me. In 2 days, I will have exactly 3 weeks until the T-Day (test day; I was going to use B-day as in boards day, but that just got too confusing with birthday) :wink: .
 

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ckent-- i'm in the exact same boat, except my exam is before yours. haven't touched micro or pharm. spent way too much time on biochem and physio. i am t-minus 19 days. i just remade a schedule on tuesday, and already i'm behind.... so at least you're not alone!
 
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ckent:

Join the club, buddy. You're in no position to panic. If you were on page 150 with 3 days before the test, then you'd be screwed. You've still got lots of time to study, and lost of time to take practice questions. On top of that: my school only gave me three and a half weeks to study for the board exam--directly after a long, treacherous week of end-of-term exams; so you've still got enough time to prepare yourself better than a lot of medical student.

Good luck to you.

P.S. Based on the distribution of questions in Q-bank: PATHOLOGY (AND PATHOPHYSIOLOGY), MICROBIOLOGY, AND PHYSIOLOGY are the most important areas.
 

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I am trying to use my panic as a tool to get motivated!!! I don't know about you guys, but I work better under high stress situations. It is nerve-wracking though how much information there is, and as all of you are, I am feeling overwhelmed!!!
That is a lot of work if you are taking notes from the path. BRS!! Are you putting the notes into the First Aid? Are you going to do that for physiology, too??
 

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Dude when does this crap end...I mean how many of the glycogen storage diseases do we need to know...and "tuberous sclerosis"? what the hell is that...I am trying to review old stuff and constantly get bogged down trying to remember new stuff, I mean who cares? 50% of this crap we'll never see in our careers and even if we saw it we wouldn't know how to diagnose it. paracoccidiomycosis or Hurler-Schei syndrome, and my personal favorite kikuchi's disease...I bet you never heard of that one eh? let's hope neither have the test writers....... :D
 

Mango

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No panic attacks for me yet. But I am having recurring dreams/nightmares about the damn thing! Last night I dreamed that it was the day before the test, and I realized that I had completely forgotten to study pharm. I remember vividly trying to cram as much of it in as I could. Ironically, that will probably not be far from the truth, except that I plan on starting sooner than the day before.

Here's a question, does anybody think they'll make it through all 2000 Q Bank questions? So far I've only done like 400, and I only have 15 days left. It may not happen.

Also, my profound thought of the day (at 2am): Wine is goooood...
 

Biohazard

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i did some damage. by trying to cram all this info in, im starting to blank out about basics! yesterday i realized that i completely forgot the route of ductus arteriosus! hahaha

however i do know that you need to grow legionella on charcoal yeast agar.

now,can anyone out there actually recognize when to use ANOVA/x^2/t-test??? It seems simple enough...but waay beyond me.
 

ckent

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Beeshee,
I have already taken notes from BRS Physiology (spent ~3 days writing ~10 pgs of notes in a notebook). I am writing a lot more for BRS Pathology because there is a lot more information in there. I don't know how helpful this is, to be honest, I actually stopped writing notes from notes (condensing stuff) during med school because it took too long, but this is how I studied for the MCAT, and just staring at this stuff wasn't making it go in so I'm hoping that writing key points will help.

I actually just moved my test date back 3 days (June 24th), it was the only date that they had available for my test site before July. For anybody that wants to change their test date, on the phone, instead of choosing the option to change your date which gets you to the automated system, choose the option of scheduling a new appointment. Then you will get to speak to a customer service representative, and you can ask him or her what dates are available at your test site before you try to change it. I know that we're not "supposed" to change test dates (according to my academic advisor, who told me that everyone feels the need to do it in the beginning but it's not necessary), I feel soo much better now. It's only an extra weekend, but now I can add a day to my 3 last subjects (path, micro and pharm) in my schedule.
 

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UPDATE: With one weekend left before my Level 1 exam, I've scored 65% on the last 100 questions that I did from Kaplan's Q-bank; My left shoulder and lower cervical spine are KILLING me; and I've made a new discovery: "FIRST AID" should be called "LAST AID" because it contains NOWHERE NEAR the amount of detail that you need to know, i.e., the physical findings of certain diseases often presented in questions. It should be used as a last-minute review of the things that you've already studied/reviewed/crammed thoroughly before the exam to boost your confidence.

Good luck.

P.S. I'll be spending my night watching the NBA Playoffs for a change.
 

Jalby

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This reminds me of the waitlist thread from last year. I can just see the tension in there. Good luck you guys. You guys actually inspired me to read through BRS Physiology a few times before I got to med school.
 

fiatslug

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I now have freaking CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME (reactivation of old injury) secondary to Kaplan! Can't write anymore. Just spent hours on inulin clearance. Don't care about pee. I want this nightmare to be over!

If it helps, some friends have taken the official USMLE fake tests, and say they are much easier than Q bank.

Collapsed Slug
 

Mango

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Ahhh slug, you make me laugh. Yes, pee sucks. I too care little for inulin, or it's buddy creatinine. Why can't they all just leave us alone? Don't they know that nobody actually cares about crap like GFR and clearance rates!

As for your carpal tunnel, how is the palmer surface of your hand feeling? and your first three nailbeds? I'll bet you can't feel half of your freaking ring finger! Is it just me, or were there 37 questions on the median nerve in the Q bank? Are they trying to tell us something?

As for me, I blew today completely off. And I mean completely! Went to the bar at 7 to watch Roy and Colorado get spanked by the stupid Wings. Then back to my place with friends to watch DVDs. Saw "The Others." Good movie. Way more intertaining then neuroanatomy anyways!

Looks like I've got a long day ahead of me tomorrow. Better get off to bed. And more freakin USMLE dreams...

Mango (with elevated AST/ALT) out
 

zpdoc

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Kaplan info for those interested:

Hey all. I've got about three weeks before my exam. My school required us all to pay for Kaplan materials (not live lectures, not q-bank(had to buy it myself!), just the books and access to the center). We had to take the path Shelf exam for our final, and I used the Kaplan book and q-bank questions and did pretty well. basically everything I've heard from 3rd/4th years says that somehow kaplan knows what is going to be on Step 1, and also doing as many practice questions as possible is key.
Here is my experience with the Kaplan stuff for those who are debating if its worth it: there are three volumes which contain all the first/second year material that Kaplan thinks you should know, plus a volume with questions (100 for each of the seven subjects). Plus if you want, you can go to the center and watch video lectures on any subject. the videos are hit-or-miss (i didn't like the anatomy ones, but path and pharm are good), plus there are too many to watch if you are really pressed for time (24+hrs for path alone), but if you have a topic that you have been struggling with, they are good for getting a very clear explanation that's not complicated with a lot of extra stuff you don't need to know for the exam. Also, a lot of the lecturers (esp. the path guy) throw in tons of "this is how the boards will ask you about this", or "the boards loves to ask about this", ect. Videos are passive learning though, and it can become easy to just start sitting through video after video thinking "yeah, great, i understand all this" but then not remember anything two days later.
I've quit the videos, and have focused my efforts on going through the books page by page. There is less detail than your class notes and even BRS, but it is also humanly possible to get through everything before the exam, and still have days left to do practice questions. Plus, in some sections like physio, there are tons of practice questions at the end of every single chapter, so you can test yourself as you go along.
Other things I've heard:
1. there are usually only about 2 embryo questions in the whole step 1, so sacrifice memorizing all those pharyngeal arch/pouch stuff if you're short on time.
2. Also, don't bother memorizing detailed biochem pathways-just pick out some points where things in the pathways commonly go wrong.
3. Don't get bothered if you can't answer that q-bank question on which obscure artery supplies some structure - you might miss a few questions by not knowing every muscle of the neck and which nerve innervates each, but the time you save will help you get 10x as many path/pharm questions right.

well good luck to everyone, hoped this helped someone.
 

Peeshee

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Fiatslug,
what do you mean by the USMLE fake tests? Do you mean the Kaplan USMLE CD?
I also am trying to go through the Kaplan books, but there is a lot of info....a lot that I don't think we need to know. I have been correlating it with First Aid though. I will start using the BRS Pathology soon, too.
Cramming all this info. into our brains is almost making us go crazy! I mean, almost everything we see, hear, etc., makes us think of medical terms or diseases!!
Well, I hear this is the hardest part...once we are through this obstacle, things get slightly easier....right??????
By the way, how many hours are you guys studying a day? Do you take lots of breaks to relax?
 

zpdoc

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My schedule lately has been get up at 8am and find a place to study at school by 9-10. I study until 7, but waste at least 3-4 hrs a day with lunch, and reading this site :)
after dinner/exercise i try to put in another 2hrs before I go to bed. And i'm sure its going to step up as the days progress and i get more panicked..
 

fiatslug

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Pee: (hee hee)

Apparently, when most folks at my school registered for the USMLE, they gave them a CD ROM of questions from the USMLE (I guess from the NBME). Not Kaplan questions. And they were apparently better (ie less detail) than our beloved Q bank.

My current study schedule is to devote eight hours of ass time to a drooling, unblinking stupor in the Kaplan lectures, which are both exquisitely painful and phenomenally helpful (Kaplan's instructors have done the impossible: made me think EVEN WORSE of the lame ass professors at my school, who have spent the past 2 years teaching me how they commit mouse genocide in their labs). Let me say again that I weep with gratitude every night for these lectures and recommend them to anyone thinking about them for next year, if you have the opportunity and you can learn from good lectures. For myself, of course, it was a crapshoot going in, having never experienced good lectures, but my glutes (and brain, which are not linked, I learned in anatomy) have proven remarkably tolerant of endless hours of intelligent, focused teaching.

Then I come in to the computer lab and screw around on this site and read recipes at <a href="http://www.epicurious.com" target="_blank">www.epicurious.com</a> and possibly see if anyone wants to hire a 2nd year medical school dropout to paint houses or clean up dog poop for a living. Then I do questions on Q-bank and lose the will to live.

Lather, rinse, repeat, until June 13th.

Inflammatorily Yours,

Slug
 
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