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I'm finally back and settled in my apartment in Memphis after a whirlwind summer break. School started last Monday and I arrived back from Honduras on Sunday night after the much anticipated SVOSH trip to Honduras. Two weeks ago, I drove the 700+ miles from home in Michigan (in a record 12 hours!) to my Memphis apartment and the next morning left for a week long trip to Tela, Honduras.
The flights went smooth to Miami and San Pedro Sula, Honduras. We arrived and the power was out, so we followed a cell phone light into our room where the window was closed because of rain and the air conditioning was off. It was so hot. Luckily, the power kicked on about a half hour after arriving, so it wasn't ridiculously hot the entire night, but it was hot during the day in clinic.
We had a group of 13 of us, and moved to four different sites to set up clinics. Somehow we managed to see 1072 patients in four days and didn't even run out of glasses! I got to help the 1000th patient on the fourth day. Turns out that he had Cranial Nerve 4 Palsy that caused him to compensate with a head tilt. First time I'd ever seen that in my chair! Also saw lots, lots, lots of pterygium and handed out as many sunglasses as we could to prevent the formation or continued growth. On the second day, we saw a child with hydrocephaly and felt the back of his head where the doctors had put in a shunt shortly after birth. Also saw a positive afferent pupillary defect in real life and not just a video like in Theory and Methods class.
We also saw a lot of presbyopes and hyperopes looking for low plus to help with reading and near work. We also saw a few older myopes that put the minus lenses on and smiled because they could see across the room and recognize faces. Even after only one year in school, I felt very comfortable conducting part of an exam and recognizing cases that were atypical. It was definitely a good way to start the year by having four full days of taking visual acuity, retinoscopy, Direct, working optical and even trying out a BIO for the first time. It was exhausting and hot, but so rewarding to practice my skills, help others and work alongside other students and doctors. Looking forward to next year already.