I just finished my second year pursuing a DO degree at Touro University Nevada College of Osteopathic Medicine (TUNCOM), the largest medical school in Nevada, which is located in Las Vegas. I will be graduating in 2011; as of now I have not yet chosen a specialty. I am excited to start rotations this Summer and put my clinical knowledge into action!
As a brief background, after graduating from CSUF with a B.S. in Biological Sciences and minors in Chemistry and Spanish in January 2005, I took a few years off to work in health care. I was an oral surgery assistant and then an andrology/embryology technician for a reproductive endocrinologist. I also volunteered at Queen of the Valley Hospital in West Covina as a Clinical Care Extender. This program is amazing, and you really get to be hands-on with patients in all units of the hospital. Volunteering there was one of the greatest experiences I had, and helped me see what I enjoy most about medicine. I am grateful I had life experiences between my undergraduate and graduate educations, because the time I spent learning real-world application of knowledge has given me an advantage in my clinical courses at Touro Nevada.
I love TUNCOM, and the opportunities to make a difference in the community are endless. Although Las Vegas is one of the largest tourist destinations of any US city, Nevada is a terribly underserved state with great need for health professionals. Touro University Nevada College of Osteopathic Medicine (TUNCOM) is a tight-knit community of students and faculty, and my favorite part of the education I’m receiving is the family feel of the campus and the close relationships I’ve made.
I am incredibly happy with my choice to become a DO, and if given the opportunity to do it over, I would absolutely repeat my decision. Osteopathic medicine is the same as Allopathic medicine in that DOs and MDs are both the only fully licensed physicians in the U.S. who can prescribe medications, perform surgeries, and work in any specialty. What’s great about Osteopathy is that there is a different emphasis—DOs are trained to see patients as whole human beings with careers, relationships, feelings, and personal beliefs. DOs also learn Osteopathic Manipulation, which is a form of manual medicine that focuses on the musculoskeletal system and the body’s self-healing properties. Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) is an invaluable tool for diagnosis in addition to an accurate history and physical exam, and it’s really awesome to be able to treat someone right there in your office and see immediate relief for countless physical complaints.
If you are interested in learning more about Osteopathy or TUNCOM, or want to talk about healthcare in general to see where you best fit in, please feel free to get in touch with me!