If I could travel back to the beginning of the year I would tell myself that I do not need to do homework and study all day, every day. I came into college expecting to have no time to do anything when, even though at times that can be true, that is not always the case. Once the school year started I was very stressed at times because I was not doing work. Although that sounds ridiculous, it felt like I was procrastinating on the many things I needed to do even though the things I needed to do were due in many days or weeks. Later in the year, I realized that I could sit down and relax and still not fall behind on my schoolwork. If I could go back I would tell myself to not stress out during the relaxing times in the semester and that I did not need to do work 24/7. College is the time to explore many different options and experience new things. I could not do new things if I was doing homework all the time so I would also tell myself to take the little free time I was given and try something new. I do not think that I tried enough new things this year and I think doing that will be an important thing to do for my future.
After hearing and reading about the Tuskegee studies, the many Nazi experiments, and countless other unethical experiments, it was hard to believe that the many researchers and doctors doing these experiments did not seem to find a problem with what they were doing. I think the researchers conducting the experiments get very involved in their research and discovering a new finding that it become difficult for them to take a step back and see what they are doing to people. Although the Nazi studies were horrific and caused many deaths and injuries, the experiments they were doing were going to help the soldiers and provided many scientific advancements. With the multiple advancements, they probably thought the work they were doing provided a lot of good in the world, despite the fact they were killing many people for these advancements. In order to prevent these unethical studies, I think it is important to take a step back from the study and try to put oneself in the shoes of the person getting the study done to them. If the researcher would not want the things they are doing to their research subjects it is most likely unethical. I also think it is important to look back at the Nuremberg Code and ensure that the researcher is following all those rules.
As a person who hopes to go into the health field and who will most likely be a part of research sometime in my life, I hope to pay attention to my research subjects and make sure that I am not getting too involved in the possible findings. With every step within the research, I will look at the subjects and ensure they are not being put in any harm. I also hope that the people I am working with or someone around me will tell him if something is unethical like I would do if I saw anything unethical. It is very important to discuss these topics where ethics have come into question. We are able to see previous examples and learn from them. It is crucial to understand the previous unethical experiments to ensure history doesn’t repeat itself.
This semester has brought many changes in my life. It started with moving to a different place with people I did not know and going to classes that were harder than I was used to. Although I was at an advantage than some of my peers as I grew up in Ann Arbor, being a student at the University of Michigan is quite different than growing up around U of M students. This past semester I have actually become much more outgoing. In middle and high school, I was very shy and quiet. I knew all throughout the summer that I was going to need to talk more in order to make new friends and I am very happy I was able to accomplish that. I felt even more accomplished about this fact when I read the letter to myself where I talked about trying to become more outgoing and talk to more people in order to make friends. I am definitely very proud of this because I never really like being so quiet in high school.
I have also changed professionally. In high school, it was very important to me to get all A’s and although that is still very important to me now I have realized that it is not as easily achievable in college as it was in high school. Throughout this semester I have had to come to terms with that and understand that many of my peers are going or have gone through the same things that I have. Due to these changing expectations and new understandings, I have managed to keep my anxiety lower than I expected, therefore, accomplishing another goal in the letter to myself.
Although I accomplished many of things I wanted to this semester, I still have improvements to make. In my letter, I wanted to join a couple clubs and do some physical activity a couple times a week. I did not do that this semester, so I am hoping that I will be able to put time aside to workout or join a club of some kind next semester. I think setting time aside to specifically do these things will offer me a decent break from the stress of school, allow me to meet more people, and explore the many opportunities that the University of Michigan has to offer.
In this lecture, the fact that physicians started to consider pain as a fifth vital sign and treat it so aggressively surprised me. Pain is very different for each person as everyone has a different pain tolerance. I was struck that doctors were prescribing such strong medications for something that is not carefully measured, like blood pressure or temperature. Also, in my experience, when I have gotten sick my doctor will usually prescribe a generic medication and if that does not work will later prescribe something stronger. I thought it was very odd that so many physicians were prescribing incredibly strong and addictive pain medications right off the bat rather than starting with something weaker like Tylenol or ibuprofen.
In order to resolve this problem, I would either intervene on the individual level or the relationship level. First the individual level by understanding the patient’s background to see if he or she will be at a greater risk of becoming addicted to the opioids. If he or she is, I would consider prescribing something else if that is possible, but if not discuss the harmful and addictive effects the drug may have as well as how to deal with effects. I think many patients that became addicted to their pain medications did not know how to deal with the effects and resulted to street drugs to continue achieving the high they were getting. I would also intervene the relationship level by ensuring that the patient will have a support group and that they understand the effects the drugs may have on the patient. I think it is important that the patient has people to turn to in case the drugs have negative effects and that the patient will be able to receive the help the may need from the people around them.