Guinea Pig

You’re probably expecting a post on Cavia porcellus
but I’ll admit straight up that this blog is more or less
free of Rodentia and guinea pigs as a rule
and today won’t be an exception to that ruling at all.

I was walking down the hall one Monday ago
when seeing a board full of notices I briefly slowed
to peruse for anything that might be of interest to me
and here’s a paraphrased version of the things I did see:

‘Textbooks!! Good as new condition. Biochem, anatomy – latest editions.’

‘UQ Christian mission! Follow us to avoid burning in perdition.’

‘Got shoulder pain? Listen, subjects for short assessment needed (it won’t be an imposition)’

‘Students wanted to fill wait staff positions. Good pay available with great working conditions’

I could do without offers one, two and four
but I had some shoulder pain and wanted to hear more
about the possibility of getting a free physio assessment
for nothing beyond a small time investment.

So off I went to be a subject for a study in teleconsultation
with two assesments run end to end, each about an hour’s duration.
One conducted in person by a physio and the other being
beamed live between us via two-way video stream.

The long range consultation was less effective without a doubt
despite demonstrations there were a few maneuvers I doubt I carried out
quite correctly. But no-one claims it’s a substitute for face-to-faces
and it’d be better than nothing, for people in remote places.

Anyway, the final diagnosis if anyone’s curious
was exactly what I expected – the pain was largely spurious.
Just the result of bad posture throughout the day
but it’s nice to be certain (for free) anyway.

Just this once I’ll make an exception to my rule - because I know this is what you really came to see.

Image from here

Acknowledgement of Body Donors

Where do corpses come from? There’s a question to ask yourself.
They aren’t prepackaged to be purchased off a supermarket shelf.
No, our materials for gross anatomy and physiology
are donated by those who at death reach for the apogee
attainable through one final act of generosity.
Past generations helped them and in the spirit of reciprocity
they renounce their connection to their physical remains
that we may learn to alleviate the sufferings and pains
of all those who still reside upon this mortal plane.
So if you, or anyone you love, has ever gained
from modern healthcare or carried the flame
for one of the professions reliant on anatomical knowledge
take this moment to think of the body donors and acknowledge
their final gift to us and the generations we precede
and recognise that we should all be very thankful indeed.

I’m on a Boat

At the start of the year when the river’s level surged
among the first things to become submerged
were the docks supporting the City Cat’s and ferries
but now it it looks like finally there is
an effort to get operations back underway
as I discovered by chance the other day.

I was quite happily trudging home from my last class,
watching the students who owned cars go zooming past,
when I took a quick detour through a nearby park
which happened to overlook the river and, hark,
down on that filthy water what should I see?
If you don’t read my title, you’re not getting an answer from me.

One last hint for my slower readers

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I decided to seize this rare chance to catch a boat home.
It’d be awesome to arrive at my street on the back of spray and foam.
But as I’d half suspected, right from the start,
my plan was always doomed to fall apart.
Turns out they’re only running at partial capacity
so they cruised past my nearest stop with total impassivity.
Still, catching a boat home remains at 10 on my awesomeness score
even though walking back up-river took me seventy minutes more.

Image from here

Would ‘You’re So Vein’ Be a Lame Title?

Now we’re learning some actual clinical skills in our classes
instead of just memorising facts in the hope that they’ll pass us.
Today, we practiced venipuncture, IM and SC injection technique,
we’ll be assessed on the respiratory exam sometime next week.

The skills we practiced today were simple enough
(although on our artificial model nothing could be too tough).
IM and sub-cut were 80% stabbing ability,
while angle and depth introduced only slight subtlety.

For venipuncture, I must admit, we did need more
fine motor skills to guide in the fixed needles
and butterfly clips with various protuberances
but in the end everyone managed to work out the appurtenances.

And look, they even let me keep a souvenir (obviously not actual blood)