“Heavy perspiration, shortness of breath—his symptoms were textbook. The only thing was, I hadn’t read that chapter yet.”

“Heavy perspiration, shortness of breath—his symptoms were textbook. The only thing was, I hadn’t read that chapter yet.”

By Robert M. Wachter, MD. I was a second-year medical student at the University of Pennsylvania, and on my second day of rounds at a nearby VA hospital. Penn’s philosophy was to get students seeing patients early in their education. Nice idea, but it overlooked one detail: Second-year students know next to nothing about medicine....

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