Sunday, October 30, 2005

Step 2a

Our records indicate that you have already passed this Step or Step Component or the equivalent NBME® Part.


Thursday, October 27, 2005

it's ok

My sister had an abscess drained.

2 year old little dani watched her mom cry in pain.

She crawled up to mommy and then pat her back.

“s’ok mama, s’ok.”

She then got some tissue and proceeded to wipe mommy’s tears.

Afterwards she lay beside mommy.


i want my own two year old! waaaaa!


Friday, October 21, 2005


Neighbor 1 had me rise from bed to check on him because of fever. looking for a source of infection, i found his right elbow to be swollen. He said it must've been bitten by a cockroach. i told him it was infected and he needed some antibiotics to fight the infection. i prescribed his meds and went back to bed. i found out later that when i left his unit, he whined that i didn't even use my stethoscope to listen to his inflamed elbow (eing??!). He went to the hospital to get a second opinion and got prescribed the same meds i gave him.

Neighbor 2. came to my door asking me to look at her 2 year old daughter who limped. i asked the kid to run and noted that she did limp on her right foot. when i examined the foot for deformities, it looked normal to me. i asked if she had any bouts of fever lately, negative. trauma, negative. immunizations, complete. i told her to observe for a week then if it still persisted, i would suggest an xray. when she left my house, she went directly to the hospital to have an xray taken. when she saw me the next day she said, "doc, normal yung xray. Di na po sya pilay." i just stared at her then walked away.

Neighbor 3. Her son threw a stone at another neigbor's daughter. Being a responsible mother she volunteered to pay for her medicines. I asked her to buy some antitetanus shots. she looked at my prescription and said, "dadalhin ko na lang sya sa center tapos kung ano yung reseta dun eh ipapaturok ko na lang sayo." (ginawa pa akong nurse) She ended up buying my prescribed medicines.

maybe if i charged them a professional fee they'd show more respect.
what should i do to earn some credibility here?
to hell with them all.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

At the End of the Day

At the End of the Day
by Michael Hussin B. Muin, M.D.
(taken from htt://

Doctors are leaving. We’ve read the bitter reviews, the harsh editorials and the sensational news. Filipino doctors are packing their bags and taking the next flight out of the country. It doesn’t matter where or as what. The bottom line is that they're out of here—and Philippine society is angry.

It’s easy to lump individuals into professional categories: doctors, specialists, general practitioners. When headlines shout “Doctors are leaving”, it conjures an image of a crowd in a cinema running and fighting their way to the exit as if a fire just occurred. In this instance, it doesn’t matter where you end up as long as you don’t end up dead. Anywhere but here, as an old saying goes.

Is this far from the truth? I honestly don’t know. I only know that there are familiar faces in the crowd: classmates, friends, teachers and mentors. And they are not running. They are sitting silently in the corner, deep in thought but ready to make their next move.

My friend told me a story once. He was in a Florida club with a white female friend. This was just after he passed the local boards. A white dude came up to him and insulted him with racist remarks. His female companion defended him, saying he was a Filipino doctor. The dude just had one thing to say to my friend, “So, what does that make you HERE?” My friend replied, “Nothing. That makes me nothing at all.”

It is a true story. Sad, but true. It also drives the point that some doctors, when they leave for other countries, may also be leaving their hard-earned degrees. Ten years of sleepless nights, stressful days and neck-breaking hours in between—all down the drain.

Only a few understand the rigors of medical training. The prized M.D. degree consumes almost 10 years of a person’s life. If you add residency training, by the time the new specialists graduate, they’d have spent half of their lives going after a goal—to be a doctor.

But beyond the time and the labor, fewer people understand the support behind every medical student or resident physician. For many, medicine is not an individual goal; it is a collective dream—nourished by fathers and mothers way before medical school. Nobody survives medical school or residency training without moral and financial support.

We know the stories: an OFW in Saudi cannot go home until his daughter becomes a doctor; a caregiver in Canada continually sends half her income to pay tuition for her brother in med school; a government employee foregoes retirement to fund materials and equipment for her son in residency training. There is no dearth of stories, as each will have his own. Behind one doctor’s dream is a collection of family sacrifices—family sacrifices that may have to be paid in full.

It’s not surprising new physicians or specialist are running up and about, ready to put all their training to use. They need to earn. Let me repeat that, they need to earn. With a certificate in one hand and some idealism in the other, they stand at a crossroads.

Doctors practice their trade wherever and whenever they can. Some go home to their provinces, while some try their luck in urban centers. Some take up additional training, while some set up small clinics. Some apply for admitting privileges in hospitals, while some get affiliations from HMOs. Working hours may start as early as 5 am and may end as late as midnight.

But at the end of the day, in the confines of their own homes, they hang up their stethoscopes and tuck away their degrees. They watch the news and eat stale dinners like everyone else. They play with their kids and put them to sleep like everyone else. They go to bed tired and weary like everyone else. Because at the end of the day, these doctors are not doctors. They are fathers and mothers, sons and daughters, husband and wives. And much like everyone else, they worry about their future and their family’s future.

As the exodus continues, Philippine society will see doctors leaving careers and patients behind. But in the confines of homes in different parts of the country, we see fathers and mothers leaving families behind, sons and daughters saying goodbyes, and husbands and wives praying for a bright future. At the end of the day, we are not losing doctors, we are losing loved ones.

Almost a year ago, my good friend told me he was leaving for Trinidad and Tobago as a UN Volunteer Doctor. I didn’t ask about his career, his degree or his plans. The only question I asked was “Paano anak mo, asawa mo?” And with a long sigh and a short smile, he answered, “Para sa kanila naman ito.”

And that is where many doctors find themselves at. With a plane ticket in one hand and a good dose of reality in the other, they stand at a new crossroads—where paths lead to faraway places and foreign countries, where the only things they can bring are what they can fit in their hearts, and possibly some pictures in their wallet.

I may soon find myself standing at that crossroads—falling in line and holding that crisp boarding pass in my hand. But I don’t dread the day some white dude would walk up to me and say, “So, what does that make you HERE?”.It makes me a father. At the end of the day, in the confines of my rented space in a foreign land, my son is more important to me than a piece of paper hanging on a wall.
Michael Hussin B. Muin, M.D. is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Pinoy.MD - The Website for Filipino Doctors. He is a professor of Clinical Anatomy and Medical Informatics in Pangasinan.

Thursday, October 13, 2005


may pimpul ako.

nasa loob ng ilong ko.

hangsaket, maygash.

Monday, October 10, 2005


have you tried calling the hotline to schedule a US VISA interview?

1. you can't call the hotline via your globe handyphone. i tried that and almost cursed the globe operator.

2. you can't call the hotline via Bayantel. i tried that and almost cursed the Bayantel operator.

3. you can't call the hotline via a PLDT payphone. i tried that and cursed the payphone.

4. you can't call the hotline using prepaid cards. i tried that and cursed the voice recording.

bottom line need a post paid PLDT phoneline. so it's either you go to a PLDT office or smile and make pacute to your friend who has a postpaid PLDT line.

guess what i did.


Wednesday, October 05, 2005

I'm BAAACK!!!!

I took the exam yesterday. I was the only one taking the USMLE step2. the others were taking some English proficiency exams for nurses, etc.

I’m not going to bore you with details. Just read STEP1, as it is of the same format. The only difference was that today the questions were 500 miles long and the choices ran from A to V (nag-iwan pa sila ng butal), that when you finished reading everything, your allotted time is up.
Anyway, I came prepared for the distractions. They actually gave me the same computer I used a couple of months back, with the airconditioning unit just above it. Last time I was flooding the area with my rhinitis (I had no tissue as I left everything in the locker!). But now I have been on steroids for almost a month, plus, I brought myself an antihistamine, and not to mention the double layer of clothing I wore.

I started at 9am and did 10 minute breaks every after two sets. (this time there were 8 sets). By 4:30PM, I was the only examinee left. since there was nobody around, I took my earmuffs off and sang while i clicked through my last set. I forgot that everything was being recorded on video. As usual.

Last time I left the testing center feeling so depressed, today I finished with a light heart. Not that I was ready for this exam – i didn’t get to read 3 books; Surgery, Psychiatry and Epidemiology, but I left everything in His hands, my worries and my concerns. And i rest in the thought that His will be done. Amen?

AMEN! now hug me!
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