Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Auscultating : Course Take in Semester 10

Finally had the mood to sit(or rather lie) down to complete this post!

Completing the first clinical year was somewhat an instant swoosh, but definitely one year which is very much enjoyable. The second semester took our journey towards a much more medicine based curriculum, which we focused a lot more on seeing cases, diagnosing, treating, controlling and preventing them.

1) Veterinary Epidemiology

The course took us a little more on knowing how to look at disease pattern affecting a population more than an individual; and how statistics would help us in knowing efficacy of various testing methods in the market in confirming a disease. An example would be how positive a HIV test kit can be? All tests man made are subjected to errors, and the tests some way or another would have a high false positive or high false negative. Would HIV test kits be a better tool in ruling in or ruling out the disease? If the test has a much higher false positive; would be it more beneficial than it being with a higher false negative? Having higher false positive would give a false sense of infection in a person, while for those who can't really take the blow might just commit suicide upon testing. Having higher false negative would on the other hand give a false sense of security, for those who are more promiscuous and active in sexual lifestyle might not pay too much attention in safety precaution. So yes, apart from animal disease we too study a lot on human diseases this way too.

2) Public Health

This course was orientated a lot by the OiE(Officio Internationale Epizootic) for which veterinary graduates should or need to know about the food safety delivered to the public. It is an inevitable fact that our work encompasses providing viable protein sources to the population, in this case animal protein source which comes under our jurisdiction. We need to know protocols from pre-harvest, harvest and post-harvest safety of the food we produce, including all animal products like meat, offal, milk, cheese, seafood, eggs, basically anything made from animals. Pre-harvest would include the disease status of the animals providing products like raw milk; harvest would be the procedures and equipments in collecting the milk, while post-harvest includes the protocols and procedures in transporting and storage of milk up till processing; for which pasteurized, sterilized and ultra high temperature treated milk are 3 of different kind of milk available by law. It was a heavy subject, but an interesting one too. On top of that, we were too exposed to a lot of one health concept, to combine the idea of medicine as a huge umbrella with human, veterinary, environment and plant medicine as one.

3) Swine medicine

A species specific course, we learn about most of the common diseases affecting the pigs in the market, from newborn piglets, weaned pigs, growing pigs, sows and boars; how these diseases affect the production and economy; how we need to diagnose them from the clinical signs and post mortem lesions or even lab tests, treating them and prevention using various commodities. You'll be surprised on the type of disease affecting these little piggies; as well as the disease which they are able to transmit to us as well such as Nipah virus.

4) Equine medicine

Another species specific course, we learn more about the common diseases affecting the horses from reproduction, respiratory, musculoskeletal and neurological diseases. Most problems horses have are respiratory or musculoskeletal related due to their working nature as race horses or show horses; while sadly most retired horses who aren't able to perform usually will be put down due to the cost they inflict on the farm. Nevertheless, it was great to know more about the diseases which affect these majestic giants.

5) Population medicine

As cool as the course sounded, basically this course encompassed on managing how a disease outbreak in a population would look like; as well as the common diseases would require aggressive control within the country. Various issues on how the immune belt in borders should be managed, quarantine protocols, control measures to prevent or suppress an emerging or re-emerging disease in the country.

6) Feline Canine Medicine

Taking about 50% of the bulk of notes in the semester, I paid extra attention to this subject because of its infamous reputation of high failure rate. To my surprise, I've managed to secure a safe A throughout the 2 tests; let's hope it stays that way in the finals. The course is also a species specific course, targeting the common diseases affecting companion animals like dogs and cats; ranging much to very human-like diseases which are lifestyle related such as hormonal diseases-diabetes mellitus; cardiovascular diseases- congestive heart failure due to dilated cardiomyopathy as well as various cancers from prostate to bone. I thoroughly enjoy this course because I could apply the most in the wards and surgery rotation course in my cases and patients; unlike other courses which barely touched any of the cases or patients in large animal wards or even during rotation. The course brings us on a trip down on relevant history, physical examination, clinical signs, appropriate diagnostic tools, treatment symptomatically, supportive, and long term management of the disease. I guess I am much more inclined to practice companion animal medicine than farm animal medicine?

7) Rotations

Everyone would be wondering how on earth I can be this busy. Well, when you need to attend to warded cases everyday at 7am and be at home only at 9 or 10pm; you barely have the time to even go for gym to look great to fit into clothes or get a date. The rotation pushed us through 12 different departments in 12 weeks, including ruminant 1 and 2, equine, theriogenology, avian and lab animal; then small animal clinics, small animal medicine, small animal surgery, pathology, radiology and last but not least ICU. I've definitely learned a lot from the rotation; it's the only gateway for us to have hands on and learn how to do stuffs under supervision. It's somewhat like a Housemanship for vet students, just that we do it while needing to study and take tests plus joining events like Vetsport or M.Silaturrahim. The last week of rotation was rather most memorable because of us having the whole ward for ourselves without any seniors guiding us while we get the privilege to do most of the treatment and procedures to the vets' disposal. The experience allowed us to do more and learn more for sure.

Now that I've completed the 2nd semester for DVM 4, I'm officially a final year student. Man, that was a long ride wasn't it? It didn't feel like just yesterday I've stepped in as a first year, but it sure didn't feel that long till it come to the day I say I have one more year till I pop into the market. MY family is probably counting the years, but hey why bother when I've only just spent RM17,000 in my 5 years education right?

For now, Finals call!

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