Rotations So Far…

Only one month into my first rotation, I have already seen more than I thought I would during my final year of my optometric education. I’ve even seen one or two things I thought I would never see in my entire career, and I haven’t even started working yet.

Right now I am living in Baltimore, Maryland, and working at the University of Maryland Medical Center in the ophthalmology and vision science department. There is a high patient volume here and there is a lot to see, so I am constantly on my toes and applying what I have learned in school. Everyone here has really made us optometry interns feel like part of the team, and the dynamic of the practice is one of relatively low stress despite complex patient care and high volume. We work hard and by the end of the day I am wiped out, but I have not gone home once yet without feeling a remarkable sense of accomplishment or having obtained a valuable lesson. Because of this, I have seen and learned a lot – and I believe this site has a very effective model in place for maximizing the educational experience for students and residents alike.

I am also becoming aware of my weak areas (*cough* rigid contact lenses *cough*), which I have made my preceptor aware of so that I can get more exposure and instruction on specialty fittings. Binocular vision is another area in which I have benefited greatly from working with our pediatric ophthalmologist. Additionally, weekly lectures ranging from optics to ocular disease have helped me brush up on a few topics that might have become a little rusty.

As I gain exposure to more and more patients, especially those with complex systemic and ocular conditions, I am beginning to realize that going on and doing a residency in ocular disease is something I want to do. I find it challenging and rewarding working with patients in this population, and so a residency is the next logical step for me if I want to focus in the area of ocular pathology.

As I continue to move forward with my time here at UMMC, I am becoming aware that one month has already passed and that my time here is passing by very quickly. Three months is really not enough time to take full advantage of all this site has to offer and I try to take advantage of every opportunity I can get while I am here, whether it is going to the hospital for consults with the ophthalmology resident, spending time fitting keratoconic lenses with the optometrist, or sitting in on surgical procedures with the attendings. There is an ever-growing list of things I would like to do before I leave, many of which I still have yet to do.

I’ve had an amazing first month and I can’t wait to see what the next two bring here at UMMC. And in the Fall, it’s on to White River Junction in Vermont!


Currently listening to: “Beginners Falafel” by Flying Lotus

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