Friday, 26 April 2013

Most awaited drama episode of the year - 5th of May 2013

There's clearly momentum building up to the elections as evident by the number of flags not only increasing in amount but size and height at every corner.

Malaysian news is also getting more and more ridiculous with bombings and scandals. I'm still wondering who made the statement that our crime rates are down. Hmmmm.

Hooray for Kedah having holiday on the 5th of May for the working citizens to work. I'll be happily making my way home after work on Thursday.

Let us all do our duty and excise our rights this elections. Go home and see your parents lah.

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Stress - the root of most if not all illness

It feels like I'm seeing more and more stressed up patients nowadays coming in with non-specific complains like lethargy, body aches, trouble sleeping etc. Some even manifests as central chest pain or gastric pains.

When I asked the golden question, 'Are you having too much stress?' some even started crying. Given the 5 to 10 minutes slot that I have for each patients, the crying will surely take up more than 90% of the time I have. With more than 6 patients waiting and the current one crying, I guess my stress level at that point is much higher than my own patient.

So, maintain a healthy mind, go out and do some exercise, adopt a new hobby, throw some darts to the photo of the person you dislike, shout your lungs out at the beach, or maybe....get a voodoo doll.


Thursday, 3 January 2013

Leaving my comfort zone

It's been such a long time since I last updated my blog. There's been massive changes in terms of my career.

After completing housemanship, I was posted to Kedah as a new Medical Officer. One major flaw in our system is that they never tell you in advance where exactly that you're posted to. So, no preparations could be made before starting work. On top of that, you can't claim expenses spent even if you went to your new working place earlier. They expect you to travel on the day that you're reporting and then start hunting for accommodation and even your work place.

On the day that I was suppose to report, I had to travel all the way up to Alor Setar, which was Kedah's capital to report to the state health office. Then, I was told that I was posted to Kulim, which I had passed 1.5 hours ago whilst on the way to Alor Setar. Don't you think that it's a waste of resources? When I finally reached Kulim district health office, I found out that I was posted to a health clinic half an hour away from town. So, here I am, a general practitioner in a small village half an hour away from the hospital.

Starting off as an MO was stressful for me initially. There was the responsibility that you had to carry on your shoulders, being the second boss at this clinic, and most importantly, being the gatekeeper of healthcare. Somehow I missed the times being a house officer when you're not held responsible for mistakes that were made and there'll always be seniors above you to guide you. Currently, if I'd missed something, the patient's health and even life can be at stake.

Actually, treating patients wasn't my biggest headache. The biggest obstacle here is actually handling issues with the staff. Initially, my senior MO was always with me so everything was referred to her. Then, there're times when I was the only MO there. This was when all hell runs loose.

Requests come to you when you're most busy, trying to catch you off guard. There were also unreasonable requests which had to be refused but at the same time, I had to worry about ruining my relationship with my colleagues because I decided to put my foot down. I guess my dental friends who have started out earlier as bosses know this very well. Maybe I can gain from some of your experiences in dealing with these situations.

So far, I'm making ado with the limited drugs and equipment that I have in my small clinic. At least there's tarred road connecting us to the main hospital and it's only half an hour away. Xrays and antenatal scans have to be done at another nearby clinic and blood tests besides FBC have to be sent off to be processed at the hospital. Now I'm still puzzled as to why do we even have an emergency section at the clinic. I can't even diagnose or manage anything here! And there's always this trouble of medical pushing to surgical and surgical pushing the case back to medical. In the end, the patient was deposited at casualty and they can decide which team to take over later. Haih.......

Oh well, back to intensive revision of clinical examination. Maybe I can train myself to diagnose aortic dissection without the need of a CT.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

The first step

I'm still wondering if it was the right thing to do. Sometimes things won't progress if I start thinking too much.

The first step is always the hardest. Looking at that calm lake, thinking if I should dip my foot into it to test water. What if there's piranhas swimming underneath where I couldn't see? Most of the time, I would just walk past that lake thinking that it would be wiser not to take that risk. However, there was always this huge curiosity which sometimes is enough to kill me while I tried to pry my eyes away from the waters.

In the end, I was surprised at the amount of time it took for me to decide. I ended up not just dipping my foot to test waters then slowly proceed with caution, but jumped straight in with a splash. No more walking away, it's time to swim till I reach the next shore. Hopefully I don't drown in the process.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Outings and Eating

 Meeting up with friends after such a long time was not only exciting but brings so much happiness. Time flies and without realising, it has been a year since I last met PP and more than a year since I last met Y3 in person. I would like to say that despite all the stress of working life, non of us showed any signs of aging. Muahahahaha.

 Today was Air Asia's 19th AGM which I attended. Most of the shareholders and proxies there were waiting for the door gift this year, which was a free air ticket for any short haul flights. Yay! Now I can start planning my next holiday destination.

It was inspiring to listen to Tony Fernandes' speech and all of us could see how proud he was of Air Asia. Hopefully his business will expand successfully into Indonesia and my share price will go up. Sad to say that our home country has given the most obstacles to talented Malaysians. No one can blame the brain drain except for ourselves.

We had lunch at the famous Siaw Kah Restaurant in Kajang. They're famous for the spicy pepper soup which had succulent pieces of pork in it. Highly recommended but beware of the amount of pepper and ginger in it. The wood ear pork dish was ordinary for me. I loved that the restaurant provided chopped garlic and soya sauce for dip. I practically finished the whole container of garlic.

That's all for now. Hopefully I'll have more time to blog in the next rotation, which will be anaesthesia. Surgery rotation was not only mentally taxing but physically challenging too. I think I've lost a few years of life completing that rotation. 3 more days of holiday to go! Why won't the time just stop.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

How to work smart

It's frustrating that the more you do, the higher chances of mistakes occurring and more people gets angry at you for making those mistakes and you'll end up at the losing end.

Then you see other people doing the least and even cutting corners but still get away with it. No wonder it's always 20% of the people doing 80% of the work.

A word of advice. Work smart. Take up as little responsibility as possible. Do the least that's required. Take your time and enjoy life. What's the use of being so hardworking?

Monday, 2 April 2012

March Market Chat '12

 Being in KL has its advantages. On a fine Saturday morning, I followed my parents to the Market Chat organised by Kenanga. It was all the way at Subang Jaya and the three of us too the train there as my parents, being 'old' enough, they get to travel for free for 6 months. Hahahaha. The event was held at Empire hotel, which was a 10 minutes walk from the Subang Jaya KTM station.

We were served hot coffee or tea during the 4 hours talk on the outlook for the 2nd quarter of the year and two companies advertised their share. I was starving by the time it was 12.30pm. Usually only a light brunch of stir fried noodles or nasi goreng was served but this time, we were invited to Kitchen Art, their restaurant to have buffet lunch! Anything that can make Malaysians the happiest is free quality food.
I started my course with squid salad, fresh tomatoes and pasta salad. It was shortly followed with prawn salad but I finished them too fast before I could take a photo of it.

 Main course was a mixture of roti Jala, meatballs, Hong Kong style roasted duck and Satay.

Being busybodies, we later found out that the buffet costs RM 55++ for each person. The trip was worth it. However, not all events have such luxury. I guess the sponsors this time around were really generous.

If anyone is interested in attending Market Chats to get the latest insights for the Malaysia market, click on the icon below and you'll be directed to the program for the year. I just realised that it's held in all parts of Malaysia. So, what are you waiting for?


Friday, 30 March 2012

The needle-stick incident

Never think that removing a securely capped orange needle after taking ABG is safe. The least expected thing could happen which was the needle piercing past the cap without you realising it. This was the first contaminated needle stick injury that happened to me.

Suddenly, I became the patient, needing someone else to poke and take blood sample from me and yet, I still needed to take the blood sample from the involved patient. I realised that actually nobody knew the process of reporting a needle-stick injury. There's no support whatsoever. You just feel lost. The irony was, there was a flowchart of steps to take after a needle-stick injury on the main board.

Going to A&E, I was still trying so hard to console myself that the risk of catching anything from such a small wound is just 0.3% and at least I've been immunised against hepatitis B. But what about Hep C and HIV? Plus that patient was an Indonesian, status unknown.

I got my first tetanus ID jab. It was quite painful. An MO even asked me if I could clerk my own history but he was nice enough to do it for me in the end.

Transporting my own blood sample to the infectious disease unit was one of the weirdest thing that I've done. At least it only took them 3 hours to process the sample and finally, I got a phone call to confirm that everything was clear. Phew.

I don't know what have I learned from this episode as I've taken all the necessary measures of taking ABGs from whatever limited tools that we have in the hospital. We don't have the safety needle for ABG taking like in the UK. We still heparanise our 1ml or 3 mls syringes ourselves and remove the needle to cap it with a stopper before transporting it to the lab.

I think it's the hassle and lack of support that deters many of my colleagues from reporting needle-stick injuries. I hope that this won't turn into a normal occurrence for me.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Wee Vien's Wedding

 10th of March was lovely Wee Vien and Jinn Did's Wedding. Congratulations!

 Dinner that night was really luxurious. It was held at Noble Banquet along Jalan Bukit Bintang. I guess this is still one of the places that you can find sharks fin soup (bottom picture).

 All the lovely ladies.

My next post will be all about food and more food as I've accumulated so many photos and too busy to blog. You all must be wondering what have I been up to lately as I've somehow disappeared from the blogging world. Been busy undergoing surgical rotation. It's tough as we're short of housemen and there's no such thing as shift system here. I really wonder how did I survive when I first joined. Last night's oncall was bad as one of the emergency laparotomy took 5.5 hours. You can actually see me withering away towards the end. The good side of this rotation is, it's always in taxing rotations that you get good bosses to compensate, I don't know why. Somehow that still motivates me a little to get up at 5.30am in the morning to go to work. Haih.....

More to come in the next post. Till then.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

The broken elastic band

A little girl pick up an elastic band found lying on the playground.
Happily, she starts playing with it, tugging and pulling, stretching it and watching it recoil to its original shape.
As she plays along, the harder she pulls, amazed at how much she was able to stretch it.
Suddenly, the band snaps and tip of it smacked her hand causing her much pain before it drops to the ground.

Gingerly nursing her injured hand, now left with a red mark, she bends to pick the broken elastic band with the other. Now it's just a useless piece of thin rubber. She tried to tie both ends together, but as soon as she starts to pull, the knot snaps off and she was left with another sharp pain. She then spots a dustbin at the side of the road and throws the broken elastic band away.

I feel like the broken elastic band. Please leave me alone and not stretch me beyond my limit.