Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I write about how time flies so quickly so often that people must get tired of reading it. "Okay! I get it already! You think time is just flying right on by!" is probably what you're thinking, right? Right.

Now that I've said that for the hundredth time, I'm quite happy to see the time passing me so quickly. The bad days of medical school just sail on without a glance back at me. And that's wonderful. But at the same time, that means that the harder study days are coming up. The days which will be tougher and more torturous are coming at me faster than I can prepare for and the prospect scares me.

I feel more than ready to graduate but I'm most certainly not equipped to handle my final and toughest year of medical school! I'm more than ready to complete my internship and go overseas to study what my heart feels truly connected to but I'm far from equipped to tackle those 12-months. It's a contradiction. I want the time to continue zooming forward but at the same time, I feel like I need more time to prepare myself for the difficult times I know I have coming up.

"The best way to predict the future is to invent it." ~ Alan Kay

I'm the kind of person who plans their future in advance. I like to know what I should prepare myself for and the future I dream of, I can't wait to obtain. Allopathic medicine is by far the last thing I want to be practicing and I'm frequently frustrated by the thinking of many (but not all) conventional doctors. I think it contributes to my wanting to finish medical school quickly. I'm just so frustrated with it all. I chose to do allopathic medicine because I wanted insight into what these practitioners think like...I wanted to understand why they think the way they think...why so many of them can be so closed minded to alternative or complementary therapies. And I've slowly come to understand it in my time in medical school. Doctors teach students and pass on their beliefs and knowledge about their practices. The same goes for their beliefs about alternative practices. And it's something that can't be helped. But that stubborn sort of thinking cannot work for much longer, not when populations of people are becoming more aware of the advantages offered elsewhere. It is good to have knowledge of both sides of the table because you need to be able to advise a patient about interactions that could be fatal. And that's where integrative medicine comes in. An adequate mixture of allopathic and naturopathic medicine.

Today, one of my lecturers who is a general practitioner in one of our public polyclinics told us a number of stories of patients he has seen in practice recently. Patients who have had live microscopy where they're told that the practitioner says there's all sorts of bacteria and fungi. In allopathic medicine, this is a sign of serious blood infection. This is a story of concepts not understand by doctors. There was a story of a patient who went to an iridologist and was told she had fibroids after he looked at her iris so she went to this GP and he sent her for an ultrasound which showed a perfectly normal uterus. No matter the story, the opinion left on conventional doctors is that of disbelief. It's no wonder these negative opinions are made when patients present to them with problems and stories from alternative medicine practitioners. But, naturally, persons with successful stories don't normally end up in a GP's office. And so, such terrible reputations are built against alternative medicine, reinforcing the lack of belief.

All that to say, integrative medicine is what I truly want to do. I truly want to go into natural medicine. I want to study and understand it more. I want to practice integrative medicine. It's the ideal practice of medicine, in my opinion, as it offers the best options for patients. It's the middle ground between the two extremes with good understanding either way. Most certainly, not a contradiction.

1 comment:

Mario said...

the last sentence in ur third paragraph took the words right out of my mouth..-sigh-..everything else was as good as usual and i believe ur blog has already begun to influence my thinking in terms of a middle ground in medicine... i need to learn more when the time comes of both natural and laboratory synthesised drugs/medicines.