Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Week 7 -- Bunyarit (Time very flies)

All the good things have come to a halt when it was finally my last week in New York City. Apart from my continuing research project’s activity, I was expecting to get first-hand experience in observing cardiothoracic surgery in the city. However, they did save the best for last. Once I arrived in the operation room, an administrator took me to another room to observe neurosurgery instead of cardiothoracic surgery.  What I was seeing is Dr. Schwartz was removing tumor from pituitary gland. Not as usual, this brain surgery was crafted through the transnasal channel.  Thanks to a medical student who kindly explained the details of each step for me, I could follow this high technology-enabled operation. To briefly illustrate, Dr. Schwartz’s assistant anesthesized and installed an endoscope onto the lying patient. Yes, it was conducted transnasally. This breathtaking experience was proceeding on a monitor and I was paying all my attention very closely to it – an inside of the patient’s body.  After the surgery, the patient might be expected to rest in the hospital around one week and may be suggested to take a bunch of hormones in case that the normal tissue of pituitary gland was greatly removed. This unexpected and special surgery was far different from what I had observed over my first two weeks of observation, mainly, because while neurosurgery is an open surgery, prostatectomy is a robot-assisted surgery.  In addition to clinical experience, the other good things I have collected from trip also include my life experience and adventures in the real world lab, the vibrant city of New York. I admit that I was being sad to leave the city. Time very flied and I wish that time could have had more seconds.  I had many opportunities in shadowing many doctors at work in the emergency room and PICU including one seeing Dr. Sperling’s, by whose hard-working (he works hard from 12.00 am to 8.00 pm but never once a complaint) and other qualities I am very impressed. By the time Dr. Sperling meets his patients, he always smiles and soothes them. As for PICU, I shadowed Dr. Howell to meet many patients. She is a very good teacher. She explained me in detail of each patient and taught me how to interpret important information from MRI picture, CT scan, and X-ray film.  Working in Dr. Tewari’s lab, I have learned a lot about clinical experience, especially prostate cancer. He is an excellent mentor because not only did he teach me prostate cancer, but he also told me and his teams about his experience and the way of thinking. There is an impressive quote that Dr. Tewari gave me “tough times never last forever, but tough people do”. Also, at Dr. Tewari’s lab, I have met very good friends who helped me from the first week until the last week of summer immersion.  After all, I would like to say thank you to BME and NIH to make this program happen. I thank Dr. Frayer and Dr. Wang to arrange everything.  Finally, I gratefully thank Dr. Tewari for taking care of me and kindly gave me such invaluable experience and knowledge I could have never gotten elsewhere. The story about this summer immersion was already ended, and I know that there is so much clinical experience going on in the operating room, emergency room, and ICU that require vast time to learn, practice, imitate and improve. I still keep the sweet memory in the happiness zone of my heart. I hope to see everyone again in my next visit to the great City of New York.

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