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Residency Internal Medicine, Russian Applicant

Call 911! The young Caucasian male had been thrown fifteen yards from the site of impact and, surprisingly, was still conscious upon my arrival. Flail chest", I thought to myself as I unbuttoned his shirt and placed my backpack on his right side. "Pulse 98, respiration 28 short and quick; help is on the way. Hang in there, buddy!" I urged. After assessing the patient, the gravity of the situation struck me. His right leg was mangled with a compound fracture, and his left leg was also obviously broken. The tow truck that had hit him looked like it had run into a telephone pole. The patient was no longer conscious; his pulse was faint, and respiration was low. "Stay with me, man!" I yelled. "15 to 1, 15 to 1", I thought as I rehearsed CPR in my mind. Suddenly he stopped breathing. Without hesitation, I removed my T-shirt and created a makeshift barrier between his mouth and mine, through which I proceeded to administer two breaths; no response and no pulse. I began CPR again and continued for approximately five minutes until the paramedics arrived, but it was too late. I had lost my first patient!

 When I decided to be a nurse, I imagined that I would be saving lives, curing ailments, and alleviating pain; however, as the paramedics pulled the sheets over that man’s head, I trembled and learned a very harsh lesson concerning my limitations. I also demonstrated then that I know how to cope with a life and death emergency with confidence, a confidence instilled in me by my diploma as an RN, a belief that I could take charge of a desperate situation and help someone in critical need. I became increasingly, even painfully, aware that I needed more education to make more significant impacts on patient care. This pivotal incident confirmed my decision to pursue medicine as a career. The knowledge base and practical experience acquired during nursing and medical school in Russia and then later at ROSS University, has helped me to become familiar with many medical perspectives in a wide range of specialties and given me a solid foundation which I intend to apply and build upon effectively during my clinical rotations.

  I found every patient interaction to be something new and enjoyable. I will never forget a 40-year-old diabetic patient who suddenly became unconscious in the ward.  My initial diagnosis of hypoglycemia was correct, and the IV dextrose administered to the patient helped him recover immediately.  I experienced tremendous satisfaction when, with the power of my knowledge, I helped an individual feel much better almost instantly.  I thrived on the broad diversity of the ages and illnesses of my patients and the treatments utilized. I am enthralled by the broad spectrum of diseases, diagnoses, and treatments encompassed by Internal Medicine.  I love the diagnostic challenge that each patient poses and the thrill of seeing a patient improve with treatment.  Each patient taught me something new, and I was primarily engaged by how even one sign or symptom could help establish or refute a diagnosis. 

 When my father was diagnosed with gastritis and coronary ischemia, the fear and uncertainty were an emotionally draining experience for not only for him, but for my family as well.  Each visit to the doctor’s office made me realize how a genuinely compassionate doctor can go a long way to relieve the patient’s anxieties, and that of their family members. I am dedicated to struggling every day to enhance my compassion further. This physician educated my father about healthy lifestyle choices, and by doing so, patients and their families can sometimes avoid chronic disease entirely.

 Emphasis on disease prevention, the primary management of common diseases, and the long-term relationships with patients of all ages, are the aspects of internal medicine that I most enjoy. My interest in Internal Medicine grew even stronger after the invaluable opportunity of working with Dr. Cadet, who has been an IM physician for more than 30 years.  I admire the long-term relationship he has built up with his patients and their families; many of them were first seen by him as young adults and now are retired. I am encouraged by his style of practicing medicine, with a heavy dose of education. I have incorporated this style of practice in my clerkships, by educating patients to participate in improving their own health.

 Throughout my clinical years I have learned to adapt to many different situations, staying up to date and learning about other cultures and belief systems. In this way, I can provide more holistic care for my patients. I have also kept up my clinical skills by performing central lines, suturing wounds, intubating, performing CPR, and casting and splinting fractures. I have been involved in many research and other academic projects; this has helped me to polish my techniques and to understand experimental data better. I now keenly look forward to clinical practice and participating in research as part of your residency team.

 I want to join a residency program that will provide me with a broad-based clinical education and the skills necessary to become a knowledgeable, caring, and deductive physician.  I look forward to sharing my experiences with the faculty, the program, the hospital, and our patients. The program that I am looking for fosters a team atmosphere of close contact between faculty and residents, working together for the welfare of the patient.  I’m confident I will harness my full potential in a program that provides opportunities for community involvement and encourages clinical research.  I am convinced that my determination, resilience, and strength of character will enable me to successfully handle the many challenges that I will face during my residency training and make me a valuable asset to your program.

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