Having seen various patients with what appeared to be peripheral nerve disorders enter and exit the neuro/other station, as I entered, I saw a young girl sitting with a visual aid walking stick. I was subsequently asked to examine a 13 year old girl’s Cranial Nerves.
I started my routine cranial nerve exam asking about sense of smell, then moved on to the eyes. After the usual eye movements, visual fields, pupillary reflexes I then offered to check visual acuity and colour vision. I was asked to check for visual acuity but when I looked for a Snellen chart there wasn’t one available. The examiner sat there waiting and it felt like my time was running out when I had another 6 or so cranial nerves to try and get through…..fortunately I had my exam candidate folder next to me so I just used fingers and the letters available on the folder.
I was then asked if I have ever performed a colour vision exam..to which I replied no. The examiner’s response was “at least you are being truthful”. I proceeded to finish the rest of exam and questioning although all that was going through my head was “oh my God I have failed”.
- Don’t be thrown by the examiner
- Some parts of examinations may require some improvisation
- You really can’t tell if you have failed or not as I passed this station with very nice remarks
- It’s okay to admit never having performed a test you offer to do in exams