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Old 10-30-2014
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Default My Step 2 CK experience. A bastion of light for you all. From a 175 to a 220

Hello everyone. I will put this in two posts because there is not enough space. Thought I should give back to this forum. I would first like to start out by saying, excuse my language, F*** ALL THE HATERS. There I go, I said it. First things first, do not let anyone steer you from achieving your dreams. So I began studying for Step 2 CK 10 months ago, yes 10 months ago. I was told I couldn't do it, and its a very tough exam. Yes, it is tough, but very doable. My target score was a minimum of a 220, so this is what I did. I shunned out all of the negative people out of my life and stopped caring what others had to say. I did my own thing. Here is my story.

I began with Kaplan lecture notes. I read them twice, and mind you, I don't think I retained anything from it. I took my first NBME after two reads of them, and my score? 175. I was demolished. Didn't even break 203. Okay fine. I told myself let me try it again. I read MTB 4x, then took another NBME. 193. Okay, fine, improvement, still didn't pass. I told myself to keep going.

I began with UW. I was getting 30% in the beginning. Yeah, you heard it right 30%. I told myself I'm getting smoked by questions but it's okay, its a learning experience. I finished the Qbank first pass with a 50%. Then I decided to change my study tactic. So what did I do?

I went back from the first block and began to type up every explanation word for word, sentence for sentence, letter by letter. My final document was 800+ pages. Yes you heard that right. I compiled a book out of UW, an 800+ page book that was better than any other book that I read. I then switched from Kaplan MTB to a program called Doctors in Training. By far, it was the most epic program I have ever used. So continuing on...I reset my qbank and the questions a second time, my average a 74%. I then took another NBME, and I got a 213. I was happy that I made progress and I made the 209 passing mark. After that I reread my document a third time and then a fourth time. Took the UWSA 2 days before my exam, and I got a 230. The night before my exam I got a very nasty sinus infection and ended up going to the ER because I couldn't breathe through my nose. I told the ER doc the next step to give me some sudafed and he said you seem to have extensive medical knowledge and I told him I have step 2 CK tomorrow. He gave me the sudafed and then I went home. I woke up the day of my exam without any air coming into my nostrils. I was about to call prometric and cancel the exam out of anger but my mother told me to take the test, you are ready, after 10 months of hibernation. I went into my exam with 2 red bulls and 2 sudafed pills, had no nose, and took the entire monster with a sinus infection. I waited 3 weeks for the result, and finally, I opened it up and I got a 220, the same exact score as my step 1. All in all, the moral of the story, FORGET what everyone says, stop worrying about matching and focus on your studies. THESE ARE CALLED STEPS, take them one STEP at a time. I am glad that I am alive, and I have my health and my family and friends. I was at the point where I told myself, F*** residency, F*** everything, I need to be happy. Money doesn't buy happiness, and the fact that I was not in a good financial situation made me work harder than ever before. I now look back at it, and I have to say thank god I am alive. For all you future doctors out there, my two cents is this, there are people who get 1 interview and match, and there are people with 10 interviews who do not match. You cannot shoot yourself in the foot and wallow in self-pity if you don't match. If becoming a doctor doesn't work out, there is always something else to do with your life. Be real with yourself, be rational, and never give up. And this is a special message to all you people who tell others they have bad chances of matching, you all need to get laid and have some sex. Sounds like a case sexual hypertension. I was told by my school councilor I wouldn't break 200 with my NBME scores, and well, he definitely felt like a retard after seeing my score report.

Total Study prep: 10 months

Materials used:
Step up to medicine: 4x
Doctors in training: 4x
Kaplan lecture notes: 2x
MTB: 4x
USMLE step 2 secrets: 4x
1st time pass: 50%
2nd time pass: 74%
3rd time pass: 80%
4th time pass: 82%

NBME 2:4 months out 175
NBME 4: 3 months out 193
NBME 6: 2 months out 213
UWSA: 2 days out 230
Real deal: 220

There are people I know who had attempts and matched, so do not be scared, the best thing you can do is give it your best shot. Even if it takes 10 years to get a damn residency spot, stick at it, don't wallow in self pity, whatever you do, you only have one life to live, its not worth destroying yourselves inside out. It's just a test, and life doesn't always go the way we expect it. Look at me, I'm broke and I'm probably one of the happiest people you'll ever meet. Remember, you are your first patient. On that note, stay grinding everyone, and if you run into anyone with sexual hypertension and those who havent gotten laid in awhile, avoid them. I hated working with a lot of doctors in the hospital because it sounded like they have something up their a**. Our society breeds us like machines, to have no compassion, to sympathy or empathy for others. I am here to tell you, to keep trying. Fools give up, fighters still continue on. Just be grateful you all have a pulse and are AAOx3. I wouldn't trade that for the world. On that note, continue the quest to slay the dragon!

So the real deal?
It was a very long test, questions are ridiculously vague and long for no reason. I will not say what was on the test but the best way I can put it is to take a 30-40 liner question and condense it into 4-5 words. For example: COPD, hyperinflation, barrel chest, chronic smoker, etc. Question stems are long and answer choices are A-K. It is long, it is brutal, it will test your patience, youre gonna be stuck between 2 answer choice. Now on top of everything I went through, I had a sinus infection and no airway entry from the nose, so it was 4x harder, but I told myself this is the most epic battle I will ever be in my entire life. Read the last sentence, sometimes you can get the whole question from reading the last one. The exam felt like a boxing match. I came home and didn't want to do anything and I had nightmares for about 3 weeks. The day before my results came, I just told myself screw everything, I slept over my cousins house and had a great time with family and friends I havent seen in a long time. When my score report came in, I let myself know screw everything, whatever happens, happens. Voila, it was a 220. 10 points lower than what UWSA predicted but I told myself I'll be happy with a 220+. I then called everyone in my family who let me live with them to study for this exam, and thanked every single one. Anything is possible, look what I went through, took one of the toughest exams on the planet with a sinus infection, and walked out of it like a boss. If I can do it, you most can definitely do it. Avoid the people with sexual hypertension. Stay positive, and I promise you, you will achieve your dreams. Deuces!
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The above post was thanked by:
Didimarie (11-11-2014), DrAGA (10-31-2014), drjds (06-24-2016), drpisho (11-13-2014), excellence (10-31-2014), faith255 (11-08-2014), FollowingDream (10-31-2014), lenoure (11-12-2014), Oncology_freak (11-04-2014), riiva (11-24-2014), seniortaker (11-03-2014), singthesong (11-01-2014), usmled10 (10-31-2014), usmlerun (10-30-2014), vita86 (10-31-2014)

Old 10-30-2014
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congratulations on your score and thank you for the inspiring words...sexual hypertension i am sure is gonna be another topic in the steps for is really true and has to be studied in order to get rid of as###...good luck...
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Old 10-31-2014
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OMG! this exactly what i needed ,
studying for steps with Depression is worst thing ever,
just like you said , i feel like F**** exam F****&&& residency & everyone!!
i want to Breath , be happy but i am Broke!being supported by faimly ,when you see others having & enjoying life but can't accept to Give up!!

Thank you for this post ,, you are awsome ,i remember i was like you in step -1 but this year i have not been my self its been 7 months already & i just did UW & mtb for CK ,!, Only i know or people on this fourm can understand ......... being all said that , you are One hell of a Fighter ! & very honest person Thank you for sharing this.
My exam is end of December , i ll keep you post & read it again & again when i will lose hope .......

Last edited by vita86; 10-31-2014 at 05:46 AM.
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Old 10-31-2014
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WORD! Thanks for inspiring words...some of us really need them...
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Old 11-03-2014
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hey gratz! gratz on finishing the step and on the nice score.
reading your post came in the right time.. need this encouragement!

so from what i understood, you benefited the most from doctors in training? how long did it take you to do it? (hours per day and how many days).
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Old 11-07-2014
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Hi Faith-USMLE

I apologize for the delay, I entire Doctors in Training course takes about 2 weeks to complete, so I did it 4x and just kept rewatching the videos. It truly helped! The course is amazing!
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Old 11-08-2014
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One of the most motivational posts i have ever read !!
Thanks a lot for sharing (:
Good luck
Never let your fear be stronger than your Faith
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Old 11-09-2014
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Such inspiring words! Congratulations, cause you deserved it! I'll appreciate a lot any material you can share with me, since I recently pass step 1 and its been very hard for me to start again. I've heard about so many books, that I don't know which one to buy, and since First Aid it's not the favorite, I'm a little confused. Here is my email: Thanks a lot in advance!!
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