1. History: one of the most important aspects of this ward is history writing. It’s someone else’s story elaborated and you need a precise and well cut theory behind each and everything that you say starting from the particulars of the patient to the provisional diagnosis. History requires practice and the more you take it, the more you can analyze the situation. No one comes with a typical history; you have to find a way to make it typical as much as you can by means of asking further direct questions (although book discourage it, by at times, it can be a life savior especially when they want the diagnosis without any investigation reports).
2. Establishing a Rapport with the patients: Most patients in the in-patient departments stay for a considerable amount of time and they will be there during your training period. Talk to them, establish a connection and you see after some time, they will ask you to examine them and they give their trust. One of the most common advises that teachers give is that “touch the patients every day, the chances are you might pass medicine ward.”
3. Carry your equipments and always be ready for any kind of examination, even if you haven’t studied the method yet. The reason behind this is that, you get to learn from your mistakes and there are little chances of repeating the same blunder in the exam.
4. Finish your study prior to the ward time. There is no such thing as I will finish reading this in the ward time or I will start in the ward time. Your ward time is about history taking, interacting with patients and examining them.
5. Medicine is not only about cause- logy, it’s also about basic common sense and basic science. They will test your anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pathology, microbiology, forensic, pharmacology. So you need to dig back into your past studies, must do a quick brush up.
6. Confidence is a key to win hearts, you are certain about something, stick to that and even if you get proved wrong, and you win again because you got the answer right before the exams. You need to show your confidence while you present the case or when you stick to a particular diagnosis. You have to obviously state the reasons for your actions.
7. If you have enough passion for medicine, you can finish reading well, selective chapters of Davidson’s in 4 months time. Major topics like respiratory system, renal system, hepatobillary etc can be revised properly within that time.
8. Make mnemonics, going to make a blog post of it some other day, the list of mnemonics that I made. Once you make many mnemonics, the chances of forgetting what they stood for is likely. So to avoid that, repeatedly studying what you made is advisable, or discusses it with your friends about it.
9. Medicine ward is incomplete without ECG reading and X ray finding. You need to work on them on a regular basis as well; interpretation is an art, the more you interpret the better you become.