Elective in Dermatology department

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم والصلاة والسلام على رسول الله

Alhamdulillah, our elective course in Dermatology Department is practically OVER!

well, i might sound like i did not enjoy even the least of it.. but not really, i enjoyed myself nevertheless and regardless of the repetitions, i think some time later in life, far into the future.. i’ll be blessed for going through all that.. besides, like one of the famous Egyptian Arabic proverb says:

التكرار يعلم الشطار


but i found another proverb that says;

التكرار يعلم الحمار

Repetition teaches (even) a donkey.. what?!?! ;)

today’s class was rather fulfilling for me. i found myself enjoying the topic of Vasculitis! i believe i felt that way because, way back during my rounds in internal medicine department last year (fourth year) i cracked my head into studying Vasculitis for TBL with all those strange terms and i really felt it was way tooo heavy for a fourth year student to study (well, that was what i thought back then)… and today, when the Dr went through the topic, i was excited to come across them all again, having flashbacks of the notes i jotted down..

well, that was not the only thing that i felt interesting today..

we had the chance to see how an ellipse skin biopsy was done. more or less like this.

and to make things more interesting was that the patient was query of Kaposi Sarcoma in a suspected HIV positive patient. my eyes went wide open when i heard the Dr discussing with other Drs wanting to do a list of investigations for the patients including to test him for HIV.

Kaposi sarcoma is a common disease to come in AIDS patient and is related to Human Herpes Virus 8 (HHV-8). it is a malignancy affecting the blood vessels hence the bloody biopsy and  the erythematous to violaceous cutaneous lesions seen having several morphologies.

in AIDS-diseased patient however it is common to find the lesion in the body folds and extending in the upper trunk. like the patient we had, he has erythematous lesions under the armpit (where the biopsy was taken), between the abdominal folds, around the genital area and even around the eyes. the patient was very old, rather cachexic, had previously lost weight and was from Syria.

i pray that the results will be good and that HIV will be ruled out as a differential diagnosis of his condition.. ameen ya Rabb.

interesting case it was. and very rare to encounter i believe.

at the end of this round.. i came to believe that no specialty in medicine is easy. i had the perception that Dermatology is an easy field dealing with simple diseases… rather it is very vast. a single lesion has many differential diagnosis. and one must have a strong knowledge of internal medicine.

quoting some of the Professors and Drs :

“i like dermatology, because you can see the lesion and disease. unlike some diseases like in the internal medicine, you cannot see.”

“i took dermatology because i thought it was simple and when i studied in medical school, the book was small (to indicate that there’s not much to be known). but when you are in the Masters program, the books to be read is that big (showing how much load it was). it’s very huge. with many many differential diagnosis..”




aaah.. i’m just relieved that my studying course this year is finally coming to an end. a lot have i gone through this year, many experiences… including special events and memories to be cherished all my life.. :)

and now is the time for study leave! the best time of the year to study and at the same time, imagining yourself returning back to your loved ones in Malaysia..

please pray for all of us here.. and may Allah reward you in return way much more..

Allahul Musta’an..

Looking forward to study with my partner- we make a good study group when it comes to Exams~ :) hopefully we make a good study group even during our classes and rounds ;P

next year maybe?? Oh My God, it will be the only year left pun! must strive harder and smarter…

will be moving on to the final year of medical school.. can’t imagine what’s it like to be graduating after 6 years of studying…



or scared?


About SarahR

a servant of Allah

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