Interview


Scheduled for my Medical License Interview with the Ministry of Health, Kuwait tomorrow. Having been already a part of the system, I just need to document my new experience with the officials. Looking forward to getting one set of paperwork through in that manner.

Next two weeks are crucial to my process of settling down in Kuwait as I rack up the furniture at home and setup things. Still awaiting my first paycheck and for the identity card that will be required for me to do all my work in Kuwait.

The cold wave seems to have returned this week with nights seeing again single digit temperatures. Perks of being in Jahra – you get the maximal experience of the weather mood swings!

I received the break up scores of my performance in the FRCR Part A Winter 2018 exam today by email. Amazed how delayed the breakdown email has come. What I did notice though was that my performance was consistent in all modules except being borderline in two of them. So expecting to jump the line in the repeat exam in June.

This provides the much needed impetus and motivation to strive forward again. The drawback though is having performed fairly consistently in all the modules, means when I prepare I have to go hard at all the modules yet again. No pain, no gain!!

The Resignation


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A year ago, I had cleared my post graduation. Added two more letters to my surname. The joy was doubled as I was officially beginning to share my life with my belle. I was stubborn, wanting to stand on two feet before bringing her into my life. So I fervently looked for a job opening. Unfortunate to not continue in my parent institute, I had to resort to plan B. Plan B was anything other than plan A. Joining a private scan center was a choice many of my seniors and professors questioned. Being a trainee is one thing, knowing I was always under the safe arm of the institution rendered a self belief that shielded me from the outer world. But coming here changed my approach and perspective.

It was a path I had to tread carefully being no doubt a dubious choice considering continued training was imperative to cement up the laden foundation. I moved on, I had to challenge myself.

doctor-cartoonI walked into a department, a far cry from the magnanimity and luxury of a tertiary care. Space between false doors were limiting. Number of faculty in each modality the bare necessity. I met two of my colleagues, who were already working independently. The MRI machine was the same I worked with, so I had a sense of comfort. The CT machine was one that I read about as I studied CT physics – A single slice machine.

I was sluggish with the ultrasounds as I started work, apparently the machine I sat on my first day was ‘the smaller one’ – the older generation machine to do the bulk of the routine scans, incapable of doppler and detailed scans. The average count on that machine prior to my arrival was 50 scan in 6-7 hours. I barely crunched 28 that day. I was exhausted. I had to make decisions. I had to do it on my own. All of a sudden all the confidence that I came with from my three years of training seem to spiral down.

69f5c519fbc392cfbcf7c9f15f282826I reached fifteen minutes earlier the next day. I tried to lift my speed. Soon I was back to the standard average case count. I was happy. Then I started challenging myself to do more, 50 became 55, 60. Then the typical wave of confidence built me up and threw me over the acceptable normal limits. I became nonchalant, I started pulling off errors thanks to my newly driven scanning speeds. It brought me back to being more sensitive with the workload and managing time appropriately.

The relentless night calls, reporting umpteen bike accidents and injuries, has made me oblivious to sleepless nights.

Working with a single slice CT was like cutting three limbs of mine and giving me just one to do everything. I felt handicapped. I felt like I was in the shoes of a generation way behind. I had to adjust. The outer world of physicians are still unaware of the advancement in technology, yet crippled by lack of finances to provision it in the peripheral healthcare. Protracting certain findings, improvising to new methods of diagnosis was a different experience all together, figuring out which artefacts were relevant.

443f9cd6d8b2c0fbcb58b0992e819084Exploring the world of 3D/4D fetal imaging – becoming a window for the mother to the baby, being a part of the journey of life is something I will always cherish. Documenting the moments of family loss are the most cringing moments ever.

It is always the team that makes the work enjoyable. I have been fortunate to have a very good rapport with the techs, nursing faculty, the management team. For the bulk of my stay we had a team of 3 radiologists (Priyank and Prasad), which made work roll by as smooth as ever. Special mention to Mary chechi without whose black tea/coffee I wouldn’t have survived day in day out!


As I googled formats to prepare my first resignation letter, I am very thankful to the management for keeping faith in me and availing my services. To serve humanity, makes life worth living.

The corridor of uncertainty..


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I was coming towards the last half hour of a frustrating and hectic day of work. A day after a` night on call is usually turbulent with me bereft of sleep and keen to run back home to catch some sleep.

The last scan I did was what I felt as a routine one. It read on the requistion sheet – chronic liver disease. Now there’s nothing unusual in that. I went about it my way documenting each and every relevant finding and once done dispatched the report to the patient’s bystander immediately.

While I was stretching out glad that the days work is over, I was told that the last patients wife would like to talk to me to discuss about the patient;s illness. It took me over ten seconds to respond to my staff whether to entertain it. Many a times I was lost as to where to draw the line when it comes to discussing the imaging with a patient especially because the colleague who is sending the patient to me would not want me to plant any ideas into the patient’s head.

But since I had a half hour left to run the day down, I agreed. When she met me, her question was simple, to the point, yet so so complicated. She asked, “ What’s his current status? “ I gave the typical radiologist response – “If you have some previous imaging documentation with you I could offer you an opinion on his current status.” She fumbled in her handbag for documents of his health care available with her. They were handwritten consultation notes from a physician with clinical and lab documentations, without any imaging. So I was in a loss on where to start.

No longer working in a teaching/academic environment, I felt this was a good opportunity to open up a lecture on the natural history of the disease. I went about it in such a manner so that I could attempt to simplify the language to the taste of a non medico, neither being too abrasive, nor too soft on the state of affairs her husband’s liver has found its way into.

But the more and more I kept explaining to her, or rather translating medical terminologies and the disease, more I realized how we are left to be mere spectators or rather succumb to being victims to the disease.

Offering hope to a patient does not really fall on the academic menu of a radiologist and neither does the profession demand such skills from the men who sit behind pixelated monitors appearing to be making foolhardy judgements about diseases that have a life and course of their own. When push comes to shove and you are free falling, one can only look skywards and hope there is something beyond life.