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Old 07-13-2014
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Question Improving my medical skills for CK?

Hello everyone

I'm new to this forum and this looks like a good place.

This is my situation: I'm an IMG, and I passed out of medical school years ago (in 2011). I have always been a "good student" and was the topper among all medical schools under our university.
God knows I worked very hard for the USMLE Step 1 and I barely passed. I could just not get more than 210 on the NBMEs and I got an embarrassingly low score on the real deal: 194.
I tried not to lose hope and studied as much as I never had, did everything - Kaplan, MTB CK, MTB 3, USMLE World, EVERYTHING! I studied all day long for more than 6 months to take the Step 2 CK. I was at 207 on NBME days before the test, and I failed the real exam, and I don't even think it's worth mentioning what score I got. It makes it look like I just went there unprepared or I'm plain stupid, which is not true. 181.
I've passed Step 2 CS in the first attempt.

Right now, I'm doing a one year research at one of the Cleveland Clinics - I had been in Cardiology and now I'm in Endocrinology. My research directors really like me and my work, and are very impressed. This research is likely to extend another year, until late 2015. (This is a good thing, HOWEVER, this is a 9 to 5 job. Meaning, much less time to study.)

I understand, what happened with me on the CK day was stress. I messed everything. However, it is also true that learning every single word of these review books is not helping me at all. Please believe me, I'm not stupid, it's not like I can't apply my knowledge.

CONCLUSION: The only thing I can understand from all this is that my basic medical knowledge might not be up to the mark. I have just been unlucky to have chosen the medical school I did. Our exams were very typical and we just studied exam-oriented. I think we couldn't pass the school exams if we started trying to gain medical knowledge. History left behind, can you suggest how I might improve my "Clinical Knowledge" at this stage, considering I left medical school years ago? Maybe I've just forgotten everything. Maybe all I remember is Master the Boards and USMLE World.

Should I buy and start going through a book like Harrison's for Internal Medicine? I've heard people tell me it'll be too much and that I'm better off with Davidson. I studied Davidson in medical school. But then, Harrison is supposedly more high-yield. And if I should buy it, should I refer to it occasionally or start learning all of it? I still have time to study, my chances for applying this fall seem bleak. And what about other subjects?

Please send in your valuable suggestions, people. Thank you a lot for reading this.

Last edited by LostInTheMiddle; 07-13-2014 at 11:33 PM.
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Old 07-15-2014
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I almost feel like you are the future me talking. I have similar step 1 score. Waiting for my CS result (august 13) and not doing too well with my CK prep. Also my college sucked too and therefore my basic science is way too weak. I must say that you are doing a good job in doing research at the right place ( I wish I could do the same).
Although I'm not the best person to give you advice at this moment but I will say to you to hang in there. Probably get someone to study with you day and night. Someone to motivate you and push you till the end.

Good Luck!
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