And that’s it! 4 weeks of neurology are over. Definitely came out knowing that neurology is just not my cup of tea. What I appreciated the most about neurology is how analytical it is. If you understand arterial distribution, you can quickly pinpoint the location of a patient’s stroke. If you understand the pathways of many neural tracts, you can pinpoint the likely locations of nervous system injury. So, in that sense, I found neurology to be satisfying–the clinical picture is usually highly correlated with imaging studies. On the other hand, neurology can be terribly depressing. You see a lot of patients in advanced stages of dementia and movement disorders with the understanding that there is no cure for these conditions. All the drug regimens slow the progression of the disease but the disease will eventually run its course. It’s definitely sad and frustrating to be there and know that this patient is only going to get worse.
In addition, it was frustrating to see that neurologists were being consulted for things that really didn’t need a consult. For instance, one of my attendings grew annoyed that teams were consulting him for “back pain.” A lot of the day was spent doing consults that, quite frankly, didn’t really need a neuro consult to begin with. I also just didn’t find the bread and butter of neuro to be all that compelling for me; I grew weary of seeing stroke after stroke on the unit. Neuro is obviously a critical specialty, but it didn’t jive that well with me!
On to Internal Medicine!