Category: Essays

Back to SchoolThis year school starts on September, 28th and it is serious! There is no joking around this year. We have 11 classes in 2133 pages of handouts. That is a lot of pages, bigger than a major textbook. Even the top 10 students said that the material was too much to cover. We also have clinical examinations every two weeks. So it is going to be a tough year. But the good news is, we only have one year to go after this one. Here are the classes in descending order according to their units:

Here are the entire lectures:
5th Year Lectures

This is the index of the lectures:
Index of Fifth Year Lectures

This is the schedule of the theoretical lectures:
Schedule of Theoretical Lectures

This is the schedule of the clinical sessions:
Schedule of Clinical Sessions

Good luck 😉

  • Interns – This is probably one of the most confusing terms in a teaching hospital. Interns are doctors who have graduated medical school and are in their first year of a residency training program. Of course, ‘intern’ is also the universal term for all those college students trying to get a short term experience on their resume by ‘interning’ there first. So, why would a patient think an intern is a doctor? After all, you would never put your faith in the legal ‘intern’ at the law firm to defend you in a lawsuit. To make matters worse, there is the opposite problem. Intern is often mistaken for ‘internist’, who is actually a doctor who has completed their internal medicine residency and otherwise a ‘doctor for adults.’ (Patients are more familiar with their “PCP” or ‘primary care physician,’ which could refer to either an internist or a family physician).
  • Residents – Residents can refer to any doctor who has graduated from medical school and is in a residency training program (including interns). The term “residents” originates from William Osler’s era when residents did live in the hospital. Of course, they don’t live there anymore which would violate worker’s rights not to mention their regulated duty hours… but we still call them residents. The other name residents are often referred to is as “PGY1” (post graduate year) which is certainly not an improvement.
  • Housestaff – One of our premed college students just asked me what this term was this week. I explained that while this does sound like the butler, maid, or cook a fancy estate, this term actually refers to the hospital as the “house” that the residents live in as the staff. So all residents (including interns) are part of the ‘housestaff’.
  • Fellow – This is perhaps one of the most disconcerting names for a physician as it may sound like it refers only to male doctors (and conjure up images of young man from England with excellent manners i.e. he’s a fine ‘fellow’). In fact, a fellow is a doctor who has completed residency and is getting advanced training in a certain subspecialty.
  • Attending– Attending to what you may wonder? The attending physician is actually the doctor who has completed training and is legally responsible for the care provided by residents. In other words, this is the ‘boss’ doctor as my residents sometimes introduce me to the patients on our team.


2nd Anniversary

2 Year Anniversary
Another year has passed and we are still here. A few things are new this year:

  • New theme
  • I changed the name Shanyar M.D. to Shanyar
  • It is the first day of Ramadan (Ramadan Kareem to all)
  • I just became a 5th year medical student (just two more years to go)
  • I bought off an auction & will make it the default domain soon

I have had over 16000 visits since last year but only 9 new comments. I also added 9 more categories. One more thing… I changed my favorite browser to Chrome. Thanks and see you next year!

See 1st Anniversary

The trauma triad of death is a medical term describing the combination of hypothermia, acidosis and coagulopathy. This combination is commonly seen in patients who have sustained severe traumatic injuries and results in a significant rise in the mortality rate.
The three conditions share a complex relationship; each factor can compound the others, resulting in high mortality if the cycle continues uninterrupted.
Severe haemorrhage in trauma diminishes oxygen delivery, causing hypothermia. This in turn can halt the coagulation cascade, preventing blood from clotting . In the absence of blood-bound oxygen and nutrients (hypoperfusion), the body’s cells burn glucose anaerobically for energy (lactic acidosis), which in turn increases the blood’s acidity causing metabolic acidosis. Such an increase in acidity can reduce the efficiency of the heart muscles (myocardial performance), further reducing the oxygen delivery.

One year has passed since my first post on this blog. Since then I have written 5 pages, 161 posts (in 9 categories and 2 tags) with over 12,500 views (I used Jetpack Stats to calculate this, my own views are not calculated) and 46 comments (half of which are mine) :). I had 430 views on my busiest day, which was the day before the final practical exams. I know it isn’t much, but I think it is quite impressive for a medical blog with an audience of a 100 students, no more. I also installed Google Analytics about a month ago and got some interesting data. Most of my viewers are from Iraq followed by United States and India. Most of them use Google Chrome as their browser followed by Mozilla Firefox and Internet Explorer (I use Firefox myself). The number one operating system of my viewers is Windows (83.72%) followed by Macintosh and iOS. Finally, most of my viewers have Gorannet as their internet provider, followed by Reber Quick.

P.S: I acquired, which also redirects here.

That’s all for now. Thanks for tuning in. See you next year 😉

PHP CodeI recently installed a new WordPress website on my server specifically for photos. When I was testing out themes and stuff and was uploading photos taken with my 16MP camera I got an error saying…Fatal error: Out of memory (allocated 70254592) (tried to allocate 19008 bytes)… I googled the problem to see what was wrong and I found out that it was due to PHP’s memory allocation limit. Some said that it would be fixed if I increased the memory_limit in the php.ini file from 16M to 32M or by adding define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '32M'); to the wp-config.php file. I tried these. I increased the memory to 256M and I still got the same error. I noticed that the photo would be uploaded actually but it would not be resized as if it couldn’t process it due to the large size. I tried the same process on my locally installed WordPress, it could resize it but it would take a few seconds longer than usual, so this was definitely due to the server. Well I found a workaround for this. In your WordPress dashboard you can go to Settings > Media and set all the Size boxes to zero to disable resizing. But this is inconvenient for some of us, in that case you can decrease the dimensions of your photos before uploading them. I decreased the width of my photos by a 1000 pixels and it worked. No errors, no headaches. You can do this with any photo editor capable of resizing photos. I use ACDSee 12 for this purpose. Hope you will solve your problem too 🙂

Adobe PDF IconUnless you are from the ice age, you must have heard of PDF files. PDF stands for “Portable Document Format”, it is a document file format created by Adobe. What is great about this format is that unlike other document formats, this one is independent of application software, hardware and operating system. This means that once you convert your files to PDF, it doesn’t matter what fonts or graphics you use, what operating system you use, or what device you use… You are going to get the same file layout everywhere in the world. You can read a PDF file on your Windows machine, on your Mac, or on a Linux. You can read it on a mobile phone running Symbian OS, iOS, Android, or Windows Phone. You can even read it online with software like Google Docs. So today we shall review some of the software that can convert your files to PDF. The basic idea about PDF conversion that almost all programs use, is virtual printing. The program creates a virtual printer for you so that you can print (convert) your files into a PDF format from any application with the Print function. Some of the factors that we need to consider in choosing the best virtual printer are speed of conversion, quality of conversion, output size of the PDF and whether or not the software is free. Our contestants are: Adobe PDF printer, PrimoPDF, PDFFill and 7-PDF. The results of the tests were as follows:
Fastest Conversion: PrimoPDF
Slowest Conversion: Adobe PDF
Smallest file size: Adobe PDF
Largest file size: PrimoPDF
Sharpest Image rendering: PrimoPDF
Normal text rendering: Almost the same for all
So in the top choices there are Adobe PDF and PrimoPDF. After printing the PDFs on paper it turns out that the best choice is PrimoPDF. Why PrimoPDF? Well, first it is free unlike Adobe PDF which comes with Adobe Acrobat which is not free. It has several convertion modes and output formats which you can choose according to your needs. It is very simple to use. You can even convert your files by dragging-and-dropping onto the application icon on your desktop. You can download it here.

BlackboardSo, the good news is; summer is over. I nearly got an MDD from all the sleep. The bad news is; school is back with the whole package (studying, quizzes, exams, lousy teachers and so on). This year we have prepared the entire third year lectures (both theoretical and clinical) for you to download. To do that you can go to For those of you who don’t know, we have seven classes this year. They are: Pathology, Microbiology, Pharmacology, Medicine, Parasitology, Community Medicine and Surgery. Their units are divided as follows:

Pathology 12
Microbiology 8
Pharmacology 8
Medicine 6
Parasitology 6
Community Medicine 4
Surgery 2

Moreover, here is the index of the year’s lectures (PDF):

In case of any broken links, problems, questions or suggestions just leave a comment below or use the contact page to send me an email.
Good luck! QR CodeAccording to Wikipedia they are a type of matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code) designed to be read by smartphones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The information encoded may be text, a URL, or other data. Created by Toyota subsidiary Denso Wave in 1994, the QR code is one of the most popular types of two-dimensional barcodes. The QR code was designed to allow its contents to be decoded at high speed.