In today’s society, we spend SO MUCH TIME on our phones. I was laying in bed last night after a long day of studying, just scrolling through Facebook and Instagram. I realized that 30 minutes had passed me without having done anything productive. There are a lot of apps out there for medical students to utilize that can make our spare time a little more useful. I discovered two awesome apps that I can use to reinforce my medical knowledge, as well as act out scenarios as if I was a physician – Prognosis and Clinical Sense.
Prognosis is a basic app with hundreds of case scenarios within several different medical specialties. For each module, it gives you a clinical vignette with patient information, chief complaint, etc. Then there is a diagram with the patient and all the basics of what the vignette described — as if you were seeing the patient in a hospital bed and they are explaining all their issue to you. Next, you’re able to determine which course of action to take involving diagnosing and exploring the symptoms. You’re able to ‘perform’ blood tests, CT scans, X-rays — you name it. Anything that could be relevant to the case, they will have it listed. If you choose correctly, they will give you the results of your test. If you choose incorrectly, it will say that your selection is not needed for the patient at this time. After figuring out relevant information from the exams, it will give you ‘management and treatment options’. This is where you decide how to treat your patient’s condition. Once again, it will tell you which is correct/incorrect for the particular vignette. Once you finish the ‘investigation’, it will give you a score and it will take you through the patient’s condition, provide information, and explain why each answer was correct/incorrect.
Clinical Sense is a similar kind of app to Prognosis – however it simulates more ‘real-life patient interactions’, including dialogue, patient images, and interactions with other medical staff. Similar to Prognosis, Clinical Sense also allows you to choose from hundreds of scenarios within several different specialties. These vignettes are more ‘real-life’ in a sense that it starts out as a story as if you were the physician, and your encounters with the patient. If you make a decision incorrectly or give false information to the patient, usually the nurse or patient will ‘correct you’. You make the story based on your experience and knowledge. If you choose an incorrect step, usually there will be some sort of consequence and you’ll have to start over to choose the right steps. There are learning points throughout these cases; you can click on a word or disease and it will give you a detailed description of what the word means.
I love these apps because it really helps me to reinforce my medical knowledge. They are a great way to get accustomed to medical scenarios. I like Prognosis because it’s a different approach on the typical ‘USMLE question’ — it brings the question to life by allowing you to choose between different exams and treatments. I like Clinical Sense because it simulates real-life scenarios and allows you to review the errors you made. I encourage my fellow students to check these apps out – they are free for both iTunes/Android platforms. I believe also these apps come in 5 different languages as well. New cases are uploaded weekly on both apps, so there will never be a shortage! What are some of your favorite medical apps that you like to use?