Aida Zabidi
Everyone talks about our postings as a houseman, and how medicine and obstetrics are the most challenging departments of the lot. I don't disagree that the two postings are very challenging, but having started my paediatrics posting, I have to admit being slightly overwhelmed by how strange and new everything is. 

I have a love-hate relationship with paediatrics; love the fact that I'm working with children and that everyone generally is very cheerful when it comes to this department - but I find it difficult wrapping my head around the different management. I just started handling patients in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and babies are a whole different ball game compared to adult patients and even other older children. The unit is filled with several incubators, and I'm surrounded by teeny tiny babies (who admittedly more often than not remind me of wizened little monkeys - and I mean that in the nicest way possible). 

These babies are obviously not very stable creatures and my heart races every time I hear the alarm, which could mean anything - a baby's desaturating, or his blood pressure's dropping. My heart also races when I hear the phone ring - it could be the labour room calling for a fetal distress or telling me a lady's on the way to the operating theatre. 

If it's one thing I've learnt from NICU, you have days where everything is beautifully calm, and then you have those days that everything seems to be hell broken loose. 

Fluid calculations are second nature, so much of our active management has to do with feeding and ensuring these little ones get enough calories to keep them growing along. Then there's screening the newborn babies - which can take forever sometimes, considering how many new births our hospital gets. Be slow about it and you'll realize that you have someone breathing down your neck. 

 I think every department will have something new to offer - and for now, I just have to learn to manage patients within this setting. In my worse moments, I counsel myself with the thought that in the very least I will have some basic training to manage cases on my own when it comes to that. Hopefully I come out it a better doctor!
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