Monday, July 11, 2011

Horrible, no good, very bad biochemistry

In medical school, it seems that biochemistry continues to kick my butt again and again. First there was the challenge of passing first year biochem. Then there was learning how to incorporate the biochemical pathways that I didn't really understand into pharmacology. Then there was re-learning all fine details again for step 1. And now, there is relearning it a AGAIN to retake step 1. No matter how many times I look over this stuff, how many times I draw out the pathways, how many mnemonics or songs I use, I can't seem to get a grasp on the damn subject!

I have no doubt that my inability to retain biochem is part of what did me in the first time with step 1, as I seemed to have a TON of biochemistry questions I didn't know the answers to while taking it. I spent my whole first week of studying this time picking my way through rapid review. I've also used BRS, First Aid, and Doctors in Training sources. No matter what I do though, none of it sticks. Maybe it is because I was a post-bac student with very minimal science exposure pre-medical school? Regardless of the reason, I'm starting to get a little nervous that my inability to retain this one subject is going to be my down fall yet again.

Anyone have magical advice of how to make sense of it all/retain the intricate details of pathways, rate limiting steps, and dysfunction resulting in disease?


Solitary Diner said...

If I come up with a magical solution for retaining information, I'm definitely using it on myself before I share it with anyone else. Hope all goes well with step 1. My personal advice for exam writing is to try to get into a good mental space - we often sabotage ourselves by not resting enough and stressing too much.

(On that thought, I think I should go sleep and stop stressing about my ward duties.)

physician activist in training said...

Oh, but please don't tell me you still need to remember the fine details of biochem not that you're out of medical school! (And if you do, just lie. Otherwise I'm dropping out.)

As for a magical power to retain general information, I fully respect your desire to keep that all to yourself.