17 March 2007

blog tweaks

i decided to add some flavor to my blog and i want to share some of the changes, since they may not be readily apparent.

the most important change is my addition of case files. for those of you who've studied medicine and/or have been a patient long enough that you know how to read your own chart, my creative license will be readily apparent to you. for those of you who haven't studied medicine, a bit of background information here: during the first semester of medical school, medical students learn how to take a patient's history. this is always recorded in a particular manner and then presented back to the more senior member of the medical team as a "SOAP" note. since i want my blog to remain semi-anonymous, i didn't want to describe people by their real names. but people are what make my life colorful, so i wanted a way to bring them into my posts. hence, i made up "case files" for some of the people i talk about. the pseudonyms in the posts will allow you to link back to the case files so that you can learn more about that person if you so desire. i see it as a way of providing more context for my ramblings. [N.B. these case files are meant to be funny. they in no way represent a popularity contest or anything of the sort, and for some, identifying information has been tweaked to protect the innocent (or not so innocent, as the case may be!)].

in addition, thanks to google, snap and librarything, i've been able to add some neat features to the sidebar (like links to medical articles i read and find interesting) and also a preview feature for the links in posts (hover your mouse cursor over "history" in the paragraph above and you'll see what i mean). i've had fun with these; if there's anything else you'd like me to add, just let me know. i'm discovering that people put all sorts of random information in their sidebars, like what they read last, the last movie they saw, or their "favorites." i tend to want to share things, like articles and books, that open up peoples' knowledge of medicine and health care.

i also added a post about problem-based learning (pbl) since so much of my education is in that format right now. it helps explain all the little things that i may forget to describe when i'm writing a post.

so...that's the 411 for now. if you have any requests, please let me know! :-)

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a little disclaimer...

i'm a medical student. just a student. so please, don't take anything i say too seriously. remember that i was an english literature major as an undergrad, so there is much fiction to be found in these pages. do you think i'm telling a story about you or your illness? more likely, you're tapping into my sense of "everyman"--that is, your story resonates with what i write here because it's not so uncommon after all. need help? please, please go see your physician. <--i'm not her. yet. ;-)