Thursday, October 13, 2016

Professional III Exam

First of all, for those who don't know, Professional III Exam (Pro III) is the most crucial and important exam along my journey as a medical student. This exam will be an indicator whether you can be a doctor or you need to repeat it again (which obviously will be time consuming as it will be held for another 6 months!).

Back to the story, for this Pro III, there will be clinical, theory and osce parts. But most of the time, clinical part is the most important part of all. Why? Because it is stand alone, and if you fail that, you will be straight away fail the exam; no matter how good you are in theory/osce. 

For theory we have:

i) MCQ - 60 questions for medical-based postings (Medicine, Paediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Primary Care, Psychiatry and Community Medicine) & 60 questions from surgical-based postings (Surgery, O&G, Orthopaedics, ENT, Ophthalmology, Radiology, Anaesthesiology and Forensic Medicine)

ii) MEQ  - 2 questions from medical-based postings (Medicine & Paeds), 2 questions from surgical-based postings (Surgery & O&G)

iii) SEQ - 2 questions from medical-based postings (Emergency Medicine & Primary Care), 2 questions from surgical-based postings (Ortho & Forensic)


We have 20 stations from different postings (from both fields; medical & surgical). 
18 were writing stations whereas another 2 were performing stations. Those stations that we needed to perform were from Primary Care (breaking the bad news and counselling) and Surgery (thyroid examination). 

As for the clinical, there are 2 parts which are:

a) 1 long case
b) 3 short cases.

Long case

For the long case, the candidate will be given a patient to clerk and examine thoroughly within 1 hour. You need to get the history of the patient,do the complete physical examinations, give the provisional diagnosis, rule out the other differential diagnosis and lay out the proper management (including investigations and treatment). As for long case, it will be from the 4 major postings; 

i) Medical-based: Medicine or Paediatrics
ii) Surgical-based: Surgery or O&G

But here's the catch! You will never know which posting you will get until the moment your name is called. So you need to come prepared as you have 25% chances of getting each of these 4 postings that you would be never know. It depends on luck too. Some people might prefer medical-based, but some prefer the other. I personally preferred Surgical based for my long case because I feel comfortable with it, but Allah knows best. I got Paediatrics for my long case. Alhamdulillah, the case wasn't that difficult. I got a case of Simple Febrile Seizure. I was lucky that I didn't get the harder cases. My examiners also was nice and kind too. I had 1 external examiner (a lady Paediatrician) and 1 internal examiner (Dr M). I managed to answer most of the questions, even though there's some part that I must say that I couldn't answer it. But I was happy for what I've done. I'd given my best shot and put all my trusts to Allah so that He could decide what's best for me. 

Short cases

So since I got medical-based case for my long case, I got 1 short case from medical-based + 2 short cases from surgical-based. 

If you got surgical-based case for your long case, you will get 1 short case from surgical based + 2 short cases from medical-based.

But in short cases, the medical and surgical-based postings include all the postings that we have learnt in Year 4 & 5.

So that includes:

i) Medical-based: Medicine, Paediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Psychiatry
ii) Surgical-based: Surgery, O&G, ENT, Ophthalmology, Orthopaedics

For short cases, you will be given 10 minutes for each station. 7 minutes for pyhsical examination and 3 minutes for Q&A session.
As for my short cases, I got Surgery, Psychiatry and also O&G.

My first station was Surgery. It was a case of right indirect irreducible inguinal hernia. I wasn't prepared much as I couldn't estimate how long/short the 7 minutes was. Plus, I was so nervous at that time and I couldn't examine the patient properly. As for the Q&A, I just answered what's the first thing that came across my mind. Hahaha.

The second station was a little bit relaxed. It was Psychiatry. My wish came true! Because a night before, I really wished that i got Psychiatry or Emergency Medicine for my short case. I didn't want to have Medicine (because of my bad history with it..that I will tell you later). So for Psychiatry, I got a case on OCD. Jyeaah! OCD baby! Fun fact-- I had never clerk a case on OCD during my Psychiatry posting in my 4th year (well, I meant..a proper history, MSE all that stuff)! For this station, I was asked by the examiners to take the history and perform the MSE. Guess what? I finished them all so fast and I even had few more minutes left. I told the examiner that I had finished and she told me that I still got enough time. Since I didn't know what to ask more, I just ask some other things that were not really important. Alhamdulillah, the Q&A session went smoothly and I managed to answer all the questions given.

My last station was O&G. I loved O&G. The moment I stepped into the room, the external examiner asked me how am I doing? He also ask me to relax and take a deep breath before I started. Seriously, the way he convinced me to relax and all that stuffs made me calm for awhile and I felt that I want to give my best. The case I got was Fibroid. The patient was cooperative and nice and both external and internal examiner were super kind and nice! There's even one MO lady who cheered up for me the moment I managed to answer all the questions correctly. She was my hero! And guess what? I managed to finish 3 minutes earlier than the allocated time. The time keeper and the doctor who was being the runner were very shocked when I stepped out from the room while everybody else were still finishing their exam. They even gave me that kind of weird face. Hahaha.

I must say that my theory and osce parts weren't that good. I screwed up most of the time, especially on my mcq and osce papers. God knows how much I felt when I finished my osce paper. It was horrible. I kept thinking, am doing okay? Am I going to fail? All these things kept on running through my head for weeks. And I also wished my examiner wouldn't suffered from cardiac arrest while they were marking my paper >.<

Completion of Studies letter

Alhamdulillah thumma alhamdulillah. I managed to survive and passed my Pro III exams. I would like to thank to my parents who had given me endless supports and sacrificed so much for me, not too forget countless du'a and prayers too. Big thanks to all my teachers, lecturers, doctors, specialists, consultants and all the hospital staffs that had taught me so much. Thank you to all my friends too for being with me throughout this journey. Your warm wishes, fruitful advice, countless support and teachings meant so much to me and I could never ever forget that. 

Can you believe it? Five years ago, I still remembered that I walked anxiously for the first time into the lecture theatre. It was Anatomy class and I still remembered that Dr M was teaching us about fertilization. I felt so disappointed of myself because I found that it was so hard, plus I couldn't adapt to the environment yet. We were the juniors at that time, just like those babies who were still trying to learn and take their first walk. Now, those same five years later, I was going to leave the medical school behind to a whole new world, and again I felt as anxious and nervous as I arrived for the first time. 

It has been a long five years and a short for years. Long because of all the classes, seminars, tutorials, bed side teachings, case presentations, ward work and on-calls. Short because of the lifelong friendships, the lasting memories, and the truly interesting and amazing things that I had learned along this journey. 

Sincerely, and from the bottom of my heart, thank you all.
without wax,
haniyahaya :)