Yassar Arain

School of Medicine x School of Nursing

I was recently visiting the Midwest for a residency interview at one of the major Pediatrics program in the region. During a presentation about the program by one of the current chief residents, an interesting remark was made in regards to how rounds were being conducted throughout the hospital. She stated that pediatric rounds were family-centered, with the nursing team present as well (nothing new, and something that is done here at our fine institution). … Read More

MMI: A New Hope

There I was, standing in an office in a major city in a foreign country and all around me chaos was ensuing. There had just been a military coup, and it was no longer safe to be a foreigner in a land that was undergoing drastic change. I was there as one of the leading members of a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), and active supervisor of a group of foreign employees/volunteers. Our NGO provides health care … Read More

Three Lessons from Third Year

The following are not the only lessons I’ve come to learn, for those are innumerable. They are just a few key things that I’d like to pass on from my personal experience, and things that I must remind myself of daily. In no particular order…. 1.    Learn what it takes to be a good intern – This was the first piece of advice that was given to me from my mentor Dr. Gilhooly, and … Read More


I’m currently on call with my surgery team right now and thought I’d take a few minutes of down time to write a word or two. So first off, surgery can be very intense…with mostly calm seas in between. So while intermittently studying, I contemplate about the career choices that lay ahead of me. One of the first things you figure out during third year is whether you’re a cutter or not. A senior resident … Read More

A Family Affair

I’m currently on my Family Medicine rotation, and one of the perks of Family Med is that I get to interact with twenty or more patients everyday, all with different stories. One of my preceptors, whom I admire a great deal, makes it a point to engage the patient with regards to his/her background and social environment. This is emphasized to the point that when presenting the patient to him, it’s not uncommon for him … Read More

Great Expectations

To what expectations are physicians held? Of course, there is the Hippocratic Oath, but does that suffice? I was at my parents’ home in California recently, and we were sitting in the living room having a lively discussion. Or in other words, my mom and my wife, Nasreen, were discussing habits of mine that they seem to have observed over due time, and grown to mutually despise.  I admit, I have a poor habit of changing out of my work clothes … Read More

A Beautiful Struggle

One of the reasons I went into medicine was because I felt relating to others suffering from disease was natural to me. I never had much difficulty placing myself in another person’s shoes, and thus being able to understand their predicament (for better or worse). Or so I thought. Becoming a physician is filled with challenges, most notably academic in character.  However, it is well known that cynicism runs rampant in medical culture, particularly amongst … Read More

Where is the Love?

It was inevitable. Here’s roughly how it went down (as close to word-for-word as I can remember): (As I listened to the patient’s heart, he reads my name on my white coat) Patient: “Are you Indian?” Me: “No, I’m actually Pakistani.” Patient: “You’re what?” Me: “Pakistani.” Patient: “Oh, ok, your name sounds Indian, so that’s what I thought.” Me: “That’s understandable, my name actually has an Arabic origin.” Patient: “Well…just as long as you’re not one … Read More

The First Cut is the Deepest

My anatomy team and I uncovered the body of an elderly lady draped in white sheets, the smell of formalin wafting through the air, and I…barely still upright. It was as if I was handed a concoction of apprehension, anxiety, and not-from-concentrate fear. So I took a swig. What had I gotten myself into? This feeling lasted for two weeks until the first anatomy exam. Up until this point, there aren’t many medical students who … Read More



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