During my gastro station I had a patient with a number of signs that I couldn’t put together. They had one particular finding that I was unable to describe properly and had never seen before but I gave it a shot and described it as an open ended small stoma on the right hand side of the abdomen.
During the questioning afterwards I was asked what it might be and I admitted that I did not know. I then tried to describe what I thought might be the answer – showing I had no clue what it was. Eventually the examiner stopped with this line of questioning but I was so thrown that I could then no longer think of any surgeries that would have caused abdominal scars.
- It turns out that the finding was an ACE – (make sure you know what this looks like)
- If you can’t answer a question make sure you have a list of differentials ready for abdominal scars (or any scars)
- Say what you see – it turns out I got the marks for just describing the finding but lost marks as I had no differential diagnoses!