Sunday, August 17, 2014

Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center

Time has been flying by and it’s hard to believe there are only 18 weeks of rotations left! It was sad leaving Thomas Memorial, which had quickly become one of my favorite rotation sites. The past few weeks have been consumed by serious board exam studying, applying for jobs, and preparing for interviews and presentations.  I promise to work on more creative posts for the upcoming weeks!

Tomorrow starts the third week of my rotation at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center in Johnstown, PA. Conemaugh Memorial is a general medical and surgical hospital. The hospital has a plethora of graduate medical educational programs, which include medical student rotations, histotechnology rotations, pharmacy rotations, and of course us – the PA students.  As for the city, Johnstown is located 60 miles east of Pittsburgh, has a population of 20,402, and is most famous for their three major floods (they even have a "Johnstown Flood Museum").

The pathology lab has three pathologists and receives around 16,000 specimens annually. This is a paired rotation, meaning two PA students are working in the lab at the same time.  Just like at Thomas, we are responsible for all of the surgical specimens. So far the more complex specimens have consisted of mastectomies, colectomies, orchiectomies (testicles), and prostatectomies. It’s also a unique rotation in that we gain both surgical and autopsy pathology experience. We primarily work in the gross room with the surgical specimens, but whenever there are autopsy cases my classmate and I will alternate who goes down to the morgue to assist with them.

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