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http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/voluntarily-repeating-ms1.986063/

So I read the above thread from a few years ago, but I am in a slightly different situation.
I am wondering how it would affect residency if I took half a year off on medical leave. I think I should take care of my medical issues before going into 2nd year. But since I will be out of school for part of the year, would it be alright to repeat half of the courses for MS1. I am thinking of just repeating the spring term, in part to avoid my loans coming out of deferment. It would also give me a chance to boost my ranking and average. I passed all my classes first year but they were just a few points above passing due to my medical issues affecting my studying. My ranking is probably currently very low, so the repeat would hopefully improve it.

How would it look to residencies if I did this, since I didn't fail anything and had a medical reason?
 

cbrons

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It probably wont matter to them. I assume this is a mental health issue. Is there anyway you can keep going with outpatient therapy and treatment? Or do you really need to take an extended break? Reason I ask is that sometimes being busy is a good treatment for ruminating anxiety disorders. Believe me I would know.

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yeah, it's mental health related. It's more related to extreme anxiety and stress preventing me from actually studying and leading to procrastination in order to avoid the stressful studying that I should be doing. :/
 
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Aug 3, 2016
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It probably wont matter to them.
and do you mean they won't have too much of a problem with the repeat in this case? or the medical leave won't help lessen the negative consequences of repeating?
 

Goro

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You'll be OK.
 
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JustaDO

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2 possible issues:

1. Would the school allow you to retake said half of the year or just make you start off where you stopped?
2. What if you do worse in a particular class? That would look bad.
 
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Jul 23, 2016
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Agree with above poster...find out your school's policy first (most important! - they are usually on your side but practices vary widely). Another question you should consider is: How much are they going to say regarding the medical LOA on the Deans MSPE letter?

Take this with a grain of salt as I am only a medical student on a personal LOA, but have nagged and talked extensively to others and also consulted SDN for help previously (probably read the past 10 years of posts regarding LOAs... :D). I think a medical leave is "OK" given if you can explain to residencies why you took that time off and that it will not be repeated again. And I think the consensus is that you must do better when you return.

But ULTIMATELY and MOST IMPORTANTLY, I think regardless what some may say [obviously, gaps for whatever reason doesn't look great by itself, but life happens], YOU know best whether or not you need the medical LOA. If you can turn it into a (+), refocus, and do much better - given that it sounds like if I'm reading between the lines correctly, you fear that you may fail a course if you continue on, then why not? If you haven't already though, definitely seek people to talk to professionally (school should have counselors for students - completely confidential ones) - Not to be cliche, but it really helped me understand, think about it a bit more (important, as it is a big decision), and have a plan of action for the next 1/2-1 year out (a must).
 
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Syncrohnize

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yeah, it's mental health related. It's more related to extreme anxiety and stress preventing me from actually studying and leading to procrastination in order to avoid the stressful studying that I should be doing. :/
Is there an option to take a week or two off if you really need it? When I have nothing to do and am not around people doing the same thing as me, things get 100x worse as I start to ruminate and beat myself up internally.


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FYI, even if you do repeat, it's not going to improve your class rank.
 

cbrons

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and do you mean they won't have too much of a problem with the repeat in this case? or the medical leave won't help lessen the negative consequences of repeating?
I mean they wont hold it against you.

And to the other poster, the school does not go into detail about why you took a LOA. Most of the time, they dont know the details. You provide them a letter from your physician to leave, and then another letter stating you are clear to return.

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cbrons

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and do you mean they won't have too much of a problem with the repeat in this case? or the medical leave won't help lessen the negative consequences of repeating?
I mean they wont hold it against you.

And to the other poster, the school does not go into detail about why you took a LOA. Most of the time, they dont know the details. You provide them a letter from your physician to leave, and then another letter stating you are clear to return.

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cbrons

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yeah, it's mental health related. It's more related to extreme anxiety and stress preventing me from actually studying and leading to procrastination in order to avoid the stressful studying that I should be doing. :/
Well anxiety disorders are common in medicine.

I would still urge you to try to come up with some ways to get back to the grind if at all possible. Whether that means taking (legally) Adderall or some other similar psychostimulant, doing some intensive outpatient therapy, exercising, mindfulness techniques, etc. only you really know.

But as someone who has been through this, I can tell you that taking time off and giving yourself a lot of free time isnt necessarily the best thing for a ruminator. Conventional wisdom is that, "well you need to take care of yourself" and "one more year is no big deal." I can tell you though as someone who shouldve graduated had I not taken my own leave, its extremely annoying to have to chug through this garbage for an extra year. Sometimes things just suck and you have to get through them.

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mw18

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Yeah, I can't imagine it helping your class rank. That would be pretty unfair to your original cohort and your new one. You're getting two tries at the same material. Honestly, I don't think letting you re-take passing grades (grades, not courses) is fair and honest, because they could be used as comparisons between different situations. I'm sure you feel your illness was unfair, but those two things aren't quite the same. I would only suggest retaking the courses if you feel like you didn't learn enough due to your illness, and not for any other reason.
 
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So you want to pay your school an extra semester of tuition to retake classes you've already passed? That's nuts. The options are to either take the full year off or no time off. If you're worried about loans you can ask for six months of "hardship" deferral in addition to your grace period. I think you can take up to 3 years worth of deferral. Just keep in mind that if you take your grace period right now your loans may come due immediately after you graduate med school.

Regardless repeating classes you passed is not a good option and odds are your school won't let you do it.


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Mad Jack

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yeah, it's mental health related. It's more related to extreme anxiety and stress preventing me from actually studying and leading to procrastination in order to avoid the stressful studying that I should be doing. :/
Believe it or not you actually push past that eventually if you stick it out a lot of the time. Med school is designed to push your brain to its limits so you develop new coping skills to handle clinical situations in the future. Get help, certainly, but don't spend a whole year getting it.
 
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BoardingDoc

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yeah, it's mental health related. It's more related to extreme anxiety and stress preventing me from actually studying and leading to procrastination in order to avoid the stressful studying that I should be doing. :/
Whatever you do, don't lie about your reasons. This sounds obvious, but you posted the exact same thread in the ED forum but instead of it being mental health related, you said in that post that it was because you missed an exam due to food poisoning and had a malicious dean. Lying = automatic do not rank if anyone ever finds out.

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/effects-of-repeating-first-year.1216587/#post-18038236
 
OP
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Whatever you do, don't lie about your reasons. This sounds obvious, but you posted the exact same thread in the ED forum but instead of it being mental health related, you said in that post that it was because you missed an exam due to food poisoning and had a malicious dean. Lying = automatic do not rank if anyone ever finds out.
I know. I just wanted to know how the factor of takin a LOA alone would impact someone's future. The Dean of Student Affairs did assure me that he would help me solidify whatever story I wanted to convey during interviews.
 
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