Thursday, May 29, 2008

when the exam is near...

Trichotillomania means compulsive plucking of hair. The scalp is involved most often, but it can affects eyebrows and eyelashes.

A mild form of this disease can be observed in libraries, when engrossed students obsessive-compulsively twist locks of hair around the fingers, but they rarely pull it out unless examinations are approaching!

Have you seen someone of that description lately? I hope I won't have that disease but it can be a bit stressful when there are lots of stuff to remember and you keep forgetting the thing that you have read previously.

Breath in, breath out...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

License to kill

"The doctors have licence to heal and licence to kill so we (ministry) have to ensure that our doctors are well trained so that we can safely receive treatment from them," he said.

-Malaysia Deputy Health Minister, Datuk Dr Abdul Latiff-
read more.

I don't think we can put the doctors in the same position as James Bond.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


I'm not sure how to describe my feeling when I read the khutbah below. Somehow, it reminds me that I'm too far to reach the level of the Companion and yet, I should be working harder to be more sincere towards Islam.

When we turn to ahadeeth of the Prophet sal Allaahu alayhi wa sallam, we find that a small hadith might contain so much benefit that volumes can be written about it. As he himself said, "Indeed I have been given comprehensive speech." In other words, a very small statement or a very small phrase will be able to carry a great meaning. This is the case with a particular hadith – the Hadith of ‘Irbad ibn Sa’riya, named after the companion who narrated it. This hadith is so well-known and comprehensive that when this companion’s name is mentioned, this hadith comes to mind. It is an authentic hadith reported in the sunan of Abu Dawud and the ja’mi of Tirmidhi as well as others.

'Irbad ibn Sa'riya narrates: "Verily the Prophet sal Allaahu alayhi wa sallam delivered a sermon, which caused our hearts to tremble and our ears and our eyes to cry." Notice the effect that the Prophet’s speech sal Allaahu alayhi wa sallam had on the Sahaabaa. And the Qur’an describes the Believers as such:
…when they hear the verses recited to them they fall down in sajdah and they cry.

This is the way of the Believer; he benefits from and loves to hear advice. And this is in contrast to the hypocrite and the weak believer, the Fasiq. Allah 'azza wa jal describes them in the Qur’an:
Why is it that they turn away when they are reminded? / Why don't they listen? / It is only the believer that benefits from advice and loves it.


I'm not sure why I'm a bit emotional when I read the khutbah. Perhaps because I've committed too many sins or maybe that I felt I'm getting further and further from what I used to be in the past...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Guard the password to your email account.

Few of my friends had the experience of losing their email password. Losing your email is equivalent of losing your online identity and could lead to severe impact towards your life.

Losing the password to your email should not be seen as a trivial matter. You should be extremely careful of not losing your password to any of your email accounts.

Imagine this scenario. Another person managed to get the password to your email. There are several things that they can do to your email.
  1. Change the password which will prevent you from using that email. After this, they can use your email for spamming to anyone in your address book / contact. Imagine how surprised your friends will be when receiving spam email from your email. This is certainly will not help building good reputation about you for a while. However, this is only a temporary effect and can be resolved by telling your friends what has happened to your email account.

  2. Using your email to gain access to other important accounts which are related to your email. This is a serious consequence that you need to consider. If there is one thing that you should remember from this post, this is the one.

    If the hacker has enough information about you, they can hack your online bank account. They can tell the bank that you have forgotten your password to the online bank account. The bank will send the new password to the email which has already been hacked. Then, the hacker will be able to access your online bank account and stole money from your own bank account. This scenario can also be applied to credit card and various online services around the internet.

    To make things easier, sometimes the inbox is filled with emails containing passwords and you may not realised this until it is too late!
Losing the password to your email should be taken seriously and email should not be seen only as a tool to send or receive message. Losing your email has serious consequence.

Ways to prevent from losing your email password

1. Don't ever give out your password to anyone or type it on the internet. When a social website asks you to provide your email username and password; for them to inform all of your friends in your address book, STOP. This is equivalent of handing the key of your safe to the thief directly. Hackers can use this method to gather lots of passwords in a short amount of time. Even if the website seems credible and has good reputation, you will never know when the site will be hacked. A good social website should not ask their users to provide access to the email account for advertising their website.

2. Use a strong password. Use a combination of numbers and letters. Choose a password that is unique and known only to you. If you suspect the password is known to someone else, change the password immediately. A good practice is to change email password regularly but this could lead to difficulty of memorising the new password.

3. Improve the security of your computer. Defend you computer from being invaded by hackers, spyware, virus and various malwares with strong firewall, virus and anti-spyware. There are lots of good free anti-virus or anti-spyware available around the internet. Use them.

4. Practise good surfing habit. Don't visit any suspicious websites that may contain spywares that could gather lots of info from your computer including your password. Surf wisely and beware of any attempt to hack into your own computer.

5. Knowledge. Educate yourself in term of the danger of identity theft. Hacking techniques evolve over time and you should be one step ahead of them. Read a lot and be careful of your surfing habit.

I hope this post has illustrate the danger of losing the password to your email account.

Related link: How good is your password?

UPDATE 5/6/2008: Added related link.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Quote of the day

This is what I learned from one of the consultants today..
A person hears only what they understand. Whatever you cannot understand, you cannot possess.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Goethe, a famous German writer (1749-1832) who wrote The Sorrows of Young Werther. This is a story of unrequited love that has been translated into various languages.

The relevant of this quote to medical student was that if you don't know about a certain signs, symptoms or disease, you will not be looking for them and will miss them even if they are too obvious in front of your eye.

If you don't know about Kerley B lines, you won't look for them in chest x-ray and will miss the signs. If you don't know the various types of ulcer, this can lead to misdiagnosis and inappropriate management of ulcer.

The lesson from this quote; I should read more to gain broad medical knowledge :)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Ex-Prime Minister quits from his own party

I was surprised to read this news....

Dr M quits Umno after accepting ‘dare’ to be first to resign

After goading Umno members today to temporarily resign from Umno as a sign of protest against the party president, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad took up a “dare” to take the lead by resigning from the party he had been a founding member of since 1946. However, he implored Umno members taking up his challenge not to join any other party and remain independent, at least until the Umno leadership was determined (after the December party elections). He indicated that he will only rejoin the party when Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi steps down as Umno president.

Dr Mahathir, an Umno life member, was answering questions from the floor after giving a talk at a forum entitled 'Future of the Malays after the 12th General Election' at the Star City Hotel in Alor Star, organised by the Kedah Malay Assembly Hall, when a member of the audience asked him if he would take the lead in quitting Umno.

Identifying himself as Ismail Jaziz, he asked Dr Mahathir if he would take the lead since he had mooted the idea. To this, Dr Mahathir, in a serious tone said: “Waa, saya di cabar ni…(looks like I have been dared). Yes, I will leave Umno...until the party leadership is determined. Other Umno members should follow me.”


difficult question

Sometimes there are times when some questions are a bit hard to ask to another person especially if that person is your friend. The questions can jeopardize or bring great changes to the friendship that you have built so far. You are not sure what kind of effect the question will cause but you are curious to know the answer.

I've experienced that situation before when one of my friends suddenly seems a bit different from normal. He was usually happy and talkative but now, he seems a bit introvert and far too quiet. I'm afraid to ask what's wrong with him in case I was being perceived as too nosy.

As his friend, I thought the best way was to give him time and ask him later when the right time comes. In the end, I found out the cause of his unusual attitude. One of his relatives passed away and it was difficult for him to cope.

Having said that, I'm still not sure what is the best way to approach this kind of situation. Is waiting for the right time is the right thing to do or should you ask the question directly...

Friday, May 16, 2008

Street Art

I'm not sure how long they took to achieve this but it is incredible.

Another interesting street art artist, Abduzeedo - Street Art Inspiration

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

the learning process

Part of our tasks, that we as a medical student need to do, is to interview many patients and present the case to someone senior.

At first, it was not that easy to do. How often do you talk with strangers and ask them lots of questions? Many patients were quite sick and in pain. Most of them are quite old (>70 years old) and it is not that common to see young patients. Some of them have hearing problem and some have dementia.

There are different skills that I've learned by interviewing various patients. You can't use the same communication skills for every patient that you are interviewing.

I have done one year of clinical research with children and teenagers and it wasn't easy to ask question to the children about their health when they hate the hospital (including doctor, nurse, medical students and anyone working in the hospital) in the first place. Sometimes, you have to ask their parent, and in the mean time, the child is running around the ward causing havoc or even crying out loud. That experience was memorable and useful for me.

When I'm interviewing elderly, some of the questions need be asked carefully. Some patients are a bit sensitive when they misinterpret my questions due to their hearing problem. Some patients don't want any pity from strangers. Some patients don't mind being asked lots of questions from medical students.

I always learned something new from every patient that I've met so far. The new knowledge that I gained is not only about medicine but also include a bit of psychology, economy, technology, how to handle family problems etc.

Any negative or positive things that I've learned by interviewing them have been useful. At the end of my journey as a medical student, I shall not forget these patients that have taught me a lot about life.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

new rotation

I've finished my rotation in Anaesthesia, Dermatology, Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Plastic Surgery. I think I learned more on Dermatology than Orthopaedics and less on Plastic Surgery. In this block, I've managed to revise the anatomy of upper and lower limb. Personally, I think you need to know more on upper limb than lower limb since there are a lot of common injury at the upper limb than lower limb especially at the shoulder and wrist.

There are various classifications of fractures but I only remembered few of the importants classifications such as Salter-Harris classification, Garden's classification of #NOF and Danis-Weber classification. That should be enough for me :).

My next rotation would be on Endocrinology, Nephrology, Urology and Vascular Surgery. This rotation will certainly remind me of my AMS (a year that I spend on doing research previously) since my AMS is related to endocrinology and diabetes :)

Analysing blog visitors

Since I'm taking a break from my study, let me show you the statistics of this blog. I'm using Google Analytics to analyse all the traffics to the blog.

Most of the traffic that comes to this blog is from search engine. Between January to April 2008, 58.45% of the blog visitors come from search engine whereas within the same period last year, only 39.35% visitors could be attributed to the search engine. I guess this blog contain more keywords that they are looking for.

Top 15 keywords [January - April 2008]
* The number in the brackets represent the number of visits.
  1. e-novel malay [60]
  2. kembara di bumi Melbourne [52]
  3. hafiz238 [52]
  4. ladybug layouts [20]
  5. candid syndrome [19]
  6. e-novel malay Malaysia [13]
  7. aurat wanita [9]
  8. kelebihan al-mathurat [9]
  9. ladybug layout [9]
  10. Malay e-novel [9]
  11. medical abbreviation [7]
  12. hafiz blog [6]
  13. Kembara [6]
  14. kelebihan al-mathurat [5]
  15. kelebihan mathurat [5]

Top 15 pages [January - April 2008]
  1. Kembara di bumi Melbourne [1284]
  2. Medical abbreviations [222]
  3. Diencephalon [122]
  4. January 2005 [107]
  5. Interpreting Electrocardiogram [91]
  6. another online novel [90]
  7. Ladybug (Red theme) [83]
  8. broken heart syndrome [83]
  9. Ladybug [72]
  10. July 2005 [70]
  11. How to migrate from old classic blogger template to new Blogger layout [62]
  12. 100 tahun meneroka sejarah [58]
  13. March 2007 [54]
  14. Few Blogger hacks [52]
  15. Google Reader shared item hacks [52]

The conclusion that I could gather from this statistic is that I should be writing more on medicine and blogger layout if I would like to attract more traffic from the search engine.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Top 10 Commentator

I've seen several blogs hosted at blogspot who are using this widget. I'm a bit reluctant to add the widget since it may increase the loading time of this blog. I might add it later once I redesigned the entire blog layout.

I've been using Haloscan previously. This widget is based on Blogger own comment system and therefore, the total comments may not reflect the actual number of comments in this blog. I have installed it at one of my test blogs and here is the top 10 commentators in this blog.
  1. Hayad [30]
  2. Chem [27]
  3. Sarah [26]
  4. Moshimoshi [23]
  5. Aria Ayumi [21]
  6. Minci [15]
  7. Ummu Layth [14]
  8. Arsaili [13]
  9. Kasyah [11]
  10. Mosh [11] --> The widget is based on the username put in the comment section. Mosh and Moshimoshi are the same person. So, the actual comment is 37 :)

interesting list

While I was searching for something, I found this list. I couldn't help but to laugh. The author certainly has a way to entertain the readers :)

Stereotyping for the USMLE: How To Discriminate Your Way To The Top


African Americans have sarcoid and sickle cell.
Africans have Burkitt’s, malaria, sleeping sickness, or worse.
White kids have cystic fibrosis and can’t dance.
Jewish girls have ulcerative colitis or crohn’s.
Eastern Europeans have glycogen storage diseases (oy vey!).
Gorgeous Mediterranian men have beta thalassemia.
Japanese people have stomach cancer and ninja skills.
Peruvians have huge lungs, hypoxia, and polycythemia.
Native Americans are obese, have diabetes, high cholesterol, and gallstones.
Indians (from India) have TB and oral cancer from chewing Betel nuts .
Immigrants all have a disease that we can prevent with a vaccine.
Central Americans have Chagas and can dance the tango.
Mexican Kids have lead poisoning (lead-laced candy was a bad call, vatos).
French people - particularly from Paris, that dirty, dirty city - have toxoplasmosis.
Asians have alpha thalassemia, Takayasu Arteritis, and asian glow.
Americans are fat. Actually, thats just an observation of mine.
“Urban” patients present to the ER with knife wounds that conveniently test your knowledge of anatomy.


Lawyers have STD’s (gotcha now, suckas!).
Dentists and aerospace workers have Berylliosis.
Explosives experts / Explosives plant workers get “monday morning headache”.
Coal miners have CWP, TB, and Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Cave explorers have cryptococcus.
Sheepherders have echinococcus and a dog named Lassie.
Radiologists have any blood cancer but CLL.
Nurses and pharmacists have factitious disorder.
Football players, wrestlers, and weight lifters are taking anabolic steroids.
Young athletes have osteogenic sarcoma.

Pathologic States

Kids (0-14) who are tired have ALL.
Young Adults (14-40) who are tired have AML.
Adults (40-60) who are tired have CML.
Elderly (60-?) who are tired have CLL.
Kids with Downs have a VSD, Hirschsprungs, ALL, and Alzheimers.
Transplant patients got CMV in addition to their shiny new organ.
Diabetics have life-threatening mucor infection. Every freakin’ time.
HIV patients have toxoplasmosis, if it’s a multiloculated brain cyst.
Moms who lose their first baby have type O blood.

read more

Saturday, May 03, 2008

correct, correct, correct...

This is the infamous quote from Lingam's video clip. This phrase is widely popular among Malaysians and some of my friends has been influenced by this phrase to the extent that it becomes part of normal vocabulary. Instead of saying 'yes' or 'that's true', now the popular phrase is 'correct, correct, correct' :)

The report of Lingam inquiry will be submitted to the King on May 11 and I'm sure many people will be interested to know the result.

Interesting link: Using Lingam's excuse at work

Mnemonic for forearm muscles and bone

There are a lot of structures in your upper limb (note that in medical term; arm, forearm and hand means differently from the common usage).

I would like to introduce you on how I remember the names of important muscles and bones in the upper limb. There are various mnemonics created by medical students around the world to master the field of anatomy.

Carpal bones.
I used this mnemonic;

Stop Letting Those People Touch The Cadaver's Hand.

From lateral to medial;
Proximal row - Scaphoid, Lunate, Triquetrum and Pisiform
Distal row - Trapezium, Trapezoid, Capitate and Hamate.

To differentiate trapezium and trapezoid, remember that Trapezium is at Thumb, hence the most lateral bone in distal row of carpal bones.

Extensor muscles of forearm
Rule of 3

3 muscles for wrist extension

  • Extensor carpi radialis brevis
  • Extensor carpi radialis longus
  • Extensor carpi ulnaris

3 muscles for finger extension

  • Extensor digitorum ( for all four fingers)
  • Extensor indicis
  • Extensor digiti minimi

3 muscles for thumb

  • Extensor pollicis longus
  • Extensor policis brevis
  • Abductor pollicis longus

All extensor muscles of forearm are supplied by radial nerve. Injury to radial nerve caused the classical wrist drop due to unopposed flexor muscles :)

Flexor muscles of forearm.
Place your thumb at the palm and put this at your contralateral forearm at your medial epicondyle with your middle finger pointing towards the thumb distally. The forearm must be in supine position.

Your thumb will be below the palm and four fingers will be pointing towards the hand. This represents the layers in flexor muscles in the forearm.

Say PFPF. The first P in your index finger is Pronator Teres. F is for flexor carpi radialis (the middle finger point towards radial bone, hence radialis). The next P is for palmaris longus and F is for flexor carpi ulnaris.

The thumb is for flexor digitorum superficialis.

There are 3 layers in the flexor compartment. The muscles in the deep layer are flexor digitorum profundus (FDP), flexor pollicis longus and pronator quadratus.

All flexor muscles of forearm are supplied by median nerve except one and half. They are flexor carpi ulnaris and half of flexor digitorum profundus.

Muscles of the hand
PAD DAB - palmar hand muscles adduct, dorsal hand muscles abduct

Thenar and hypothenar muscles
All For One And One For All (medial to lateral)

Abductor digiti minimi, Flexor digiti minimi, Opponens digiti minimi, Adductor pollicis, Opponens Pollicis, Flexor Pollicis Brevis, Abductor pollicis brevis

All intrinsic muscles of the hand are innervated by ulnar nerve except these muscles which are innervated by the median nerve

LOAF muscles

Lateral 2 lumbricals, Opponens pollicis, Abductor pollicis brevis, Flexor pollicis brevis

Friday, May 02, 2008

writing your own will

I have always wondered if there is any feature in a blog that will enable for a person to write their own will in case they passed away suddenly. Recent famous Malaysian blogger that has passed away was Rustam Sani. This was his last post.

This feature is not only useful for bloggers that have gone to the afterlife but also to those bloggers who have mysteriously disappeared from the online world. Perhaps, they were kidnapped, lost their laptop or being cut off from the internet due some unexpected factors such as earthquake that disrupt undersea internet cables.

Now, Blogger has introduced this features that was previously only available in Blogger Draft. Now, you can publish your post in the future.

There should not be any excuse for those bloggers who are using blogspot of not using this new feature.