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  1. #1
    berdugo75 is offline Junior Member
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    Wanna pass step 2 cs??????????????????????

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    Ok guys, I passed this on the 1st attempt. I am a U.S. Citizen IMG, so I will tell you all, from a U.S. Citizen IMG point of view, how to pass this exam.

    First of all, I was as nervous as anybody else, but I believed in myself. Once I got done with the first SP, I wasn't nervous anymore. I studied for about 2 months from FIRST AID FOR STEP 2 CS and UWORLD....YOU DON'T NEED TO STUDY FROM ANYTHING ELSE!!!!!!!! My cases mainly came from First Aid.

    I have a lot of clinical experience, as I work in a medical office, so I got to practice a lot on the patients, my friends, my family, and drug reps. The drug reps really coached me on my interpersonal skills, since they are the experts in customer service and selling yourself to the client! Additionally, a classmate of mine from medical school studied with me and we would simulate an SP encounter and time our encounters ----> VERY HELPFUL.

    I didn't go through any crazy rituals before the exam, I only said a prayer and asked for peace of mind before taking the exam. I slept for 6 hours before the exam and after the exam, I drove for 6 hours back to my house.

    I took the exam in L.A. and the staff at the center were extremely nice, the SPs were very good and very courteous, 2 of them even joked around with me during the encounter.

    I had only 1 real difficult case, that I didn't get to finish examining. I didn't finish 2 notes because I decided to type the note...DO NOT TYPE THE NOTE, IT TAKES TOO LONG.....also when doing the note, START WITH THE DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS AND WORK-UP, then MOVE ON TO THE PRESENT ILLNESS, THEN PHYSICAL EXAM.

    Don't beat yourself up if you don't know the diagnosis, what counts is how you interact with the patient and get an oriented history and obviously your note needs to make sense.

    Always make eye contact with the patient. Most of us in medical school were taught not to take notes and to memorize what the patient has told us, if you listen to the patient and not worry so much about asking all of the PAMHUGSFOSS, you will be fine. Be methodical, that is why you need to practice a lot.

    Also, be geniuine, if you have a great personality, show it to the SP. If you think that you are too important to be nice to a patient, humble yourself a little bit and show the SP that you are interested in him/her.

    To be honest with you all, I really didn't know what the result would be, you are at the mercy of the SPs, but I was pretty confident that I passed and I did.

    In a nutshell: PRACTICE, be confident, speak clearly, be friendly to the SP, explain to the patient what you will be doing before you examine them (they like that), answer questions sincerely, avoid the tired and scripted phrases to address patients' concerns (e.g. "I can see that you are...", "I can understand that....") BE REAL. DRAPE THE PATIENT, WASH YOUR HANDS, MAKE EYE CONTACT, SMILE, LISTEN TO THE PATIENT, AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST................

    ..........MAKE SURE YOU BRING A TOOTHBRUSH, TOOTHPASTE, MOUTWASH, AND MINTS (DON'T CHEW ON THE MINTS WHILE YOU ARE WITH THE SP).

    Lot's of luck to you!!!
    Last edited by berdugo75; 06-29-2009 at 09:50 AM.

  2. #2
    Lucy May is offline Member 537 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by berdugo75 View Post
    Ok guys, I passed this on the 1st attempt. I am a U.S. Citizen IMG, so I will tell you all, from a U.S. Citizen IMG point of view, how to pass this exam.

    First of all, I was as nervous as anybody else, but I believed in myself. Once I got done with the first SP, I wasn't nervous anymore. I studied for about 2 months from FIRST AID FOR STEP 2 CS and UWORLD....YOU DON'T NEED TO STUDY FROM ANYTHING ELSE!!!!!!!! My cases mainly came from First Aid.

    I have a lot of clinical experience, as I work in a medical office, so I got to practice a lot on the patients, my friends, my family, and drug reps. The drug reps really coached me on my interpersonal skills, since they are the experts in customer service and selling yourself to the client! Additionally, a classmate of mine from medical school studied with me and we would simulate an SP encounter and time our encounters ----> VERY HELPFUL.

    I didn't go through any crazy rituals before the exam, I only said a prayer and asked for peace of mind before taking the exam. I slept for 6 hours before the exam and after the exam, I drove for 6 hours back to my house.

    I took the exam in L.A. and the staff at the center were extremely nice, the SPs were very good and very courteous, 2 of them even joked around with me during the encounter.

    I had only 1 real difficult case, that I didn't get to finish examining. I didn't finish 2 notes because I decided to type the note...DO NOT TYPE THE NOTE, IT TAKES TOO LONG.....also when doing the note, START WITH THE DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS AND WORK-UP, then MOVE ON TO THE PRESENT ILLNESS, THEN PHYSICAL EXAM.

    Don't beat yourself up if you don't know the diagnosis, what counts is how you interact with the patient and get an oriented history and obviously your note needs to make sense.

    Always make eye contact with the patient. Most of us in medical school were taught not to take notes and to memorize what the patient has told us, if you listen to the patient and not worry so much about asking all of the PAMHUGSFOSS, you will be fine. Be methodical, that is why you need to practice a lot.

    Also, be geniuine, if you have a great personality, show it to the SP. If you think that you are too important to be nice to a patient, humble yourself a little bit and show the SP that you are interested in him/her.

    To be honest with you all, I really didn't know what the result would be, you are at the mercy of the SPs, but I was pretty confident that I passed and I did.

    In a nutshell: PRACTICE, be confident, speak clearly, be friendly to the SP, explain to the patient what you will be doing before you examine them (they like that), answer questions sincerely, avoid the tired and scripted phrases to address patients' concerns (e.g. "I can see that you are...", "I can understand that....") BE REAL. DRAPE THE PATIENT, WASH YOUR HANDS, MAKE EYE CONTACT, SMILE, LISTEN TO THE PATIENT, AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST................

    ..........MAKE SURE YOU BRING A TOOTHBRUSH, TOOTHPASTE, MOUTWASH, AND MINTS (DON'T CHEW ON THE MINTS WHILE YOU ARE WITH THE SP).

    Lot's of luck to you!!!
    You must have horrible typing skills because I couldn't imagine NOT typing the note.

    I found out my result yesterday after assuring myself that I had failed. You gave great advice. It really is about interacting with the patient because I was sure my patient notes were awful. Half of the cases I had NO idea what to even put down as a first differential and maybe only one case did I actually fill in all five differentials and work-ups. I forgot to do so many things in the actual encounter, but my goal with every patient was to treat them with as much concern and respect as possible. I always did the same thing with every patient. I knocked loudly, peeked my head in and stated their name with a question, smiled, made eye contact, introduced myself with a firm handshake. I tried to say "Oh, Ms. X, so I hear that your having trouble with [fill in the blank]...well, I'm going to ask you some questions and then later do a physical exam to see if we can figure out what's causing your pain, is that okay?" Then I asked permission to place the drape over their lap, sat down and started asking the questions. While I washed my hands, I always tried to come up with something to say to ease the tension, in a lot of the cases I asked about their children, that always brought a smile to their faces.

    I ONLY did First Aid, but I studied every case inside and out. I didn't feel like the cases I had on the exam were like the First Aid cases, but because I studied FA so much I was prepared to ask every question imagineable. Plus I was a mnemonics queen (although at the actual exam I was so nervous I think I forgot half of them!). Google "CS tips and tricks" for a great resource, I used that a lot too. Otherwise, DON'T WASTE your money on anything but that. I think I have my mnemonics word document saved somewhere if you're interested, just PM me.

    And as everyone says: PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. I went through all the cases with my spouse so don't worry if it's not another medical student. Just find someone willing to sacrifice their time to help you out. I also practiced typing out the patient note on the USMLE website.

    I had convinced myself that I failed because of how much I fumbled through the physical exam, counseling, bad patient notes, so I want to reassure you that if I passed you definitely will too.

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