Monday, October 08, 2007

Education mirrors reality in a series of random coincidences

I got a text message from a friend this morning:

"Leafs forward Jason Blake diagnosed with CML (Chronic Mylegenous Leukemia) - More at"

The guy who sent me this text message is a huge Ottawa Senators fan, and he knows how much I love the Leafs (I still owe him $5 because of a game that Toronto couldn't pull out of the hat last week). As often as he can, he tells me how much he thinks the Leafs suck, even though the Sens haven't won a Stanley Cup for way longer than the Leafs.

So, combine that with the fact that our last week of class involved learning about all the types of leukemia, lymphoma and myelodysplastic syndromes, and it's obvious that I would interpret this text message as him reaching a new low in mocking my favourite sports team.

But then I checked it out. He wasn't kidding.

Odd coincidence? Yep. Virtually impossible? Okay, probably not even close... but still weird.

It's not just with this story, though.

This week's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition built a new home for a family of a girl with another type of cancer we learned this week. Don't ask me how I know that.

It gets better. Last week, the cover article of the Canadian Medical Association Journal matched exactly what we were learning that week. We were learning about blood formation - and the cover article was on Erythropoitein, a hormone that influences red blood cell growth, and its role in the therapy of critically ill patients.

And - get this - that's happened almost half a dozen times with the CMAJ. I'm talking cover stories, too - not just articles within the journal.

During our pulmonary unit, the week we learned about deep-vein thromboses, there was a cover article on that in the CMAJ. Our intestine week was accompanied by a CMAJ cover story on colon cancer screening. And there was a cover article on Ovarian Cancer right about when last year's class was learning about reproduction.

Not only that, but a cover article on alcohol use was right during the week when we medical students were drinking a lot of alcohol (okay, that one wasn't a coincidence at all... that could be any week).

But, to top it off, during the very week we learned about Congestive Heart Failure, not only did the cover story match that topic... but my PBL small-group tutor had written an article in that edition of the CMAJ.


EE said...

We better not have lost another blogger...

come back!

Anonymous said...

Not only that, but in the last week of B&L, ER showed an episode where a patient had a coagulopathy--von Willibrands Disease!