From the Wards

Apshara Ravichandran Apshara Ravichandran (2 Posts)

Contributing Writer

Saint Louis University School of Medicine


Apshara Ravichandran is a third-year medical student at Saint Louis University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO. In 2018, she graduated from Williams College with a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology and chemistry. She enjoys reading, running, and going to the local dog park in her free time. After graduating medical school, Apshara would like to pursue a career in a pediatric specialty or child psychiatry.




“Welcome to Medicine”

You don’t have to sit in silence and painfully nod along with an attending’s racist, misogynistic lectures because you’re their medical student. You don’t need to pick the skin off your cuticles to stop yourself from replying. You don’t need to learn how to hide your grimaces behind your mask because you know you’ll have to listen to them attack your identity for the next several weeks.

The Privilege of Patient Care

Each morning, Mr. E had a new concern — too hot, too cold, too dizzy, too stiff. He was admitted for what seemed to be a straightforward heart failure exacerbation, but his echocardiography showed severe hypertrophy in both sides of his heart that the cardiologists described as “concerning for infiltrative cardiomyopathy.”  For me, this was intriguing; as a fourth-year medical student with only one year of clinical training under my belt, the autoimmune diseases I’ve come across in actual practice have been few and far between. Mr. E, however, seemed completely uninterested whenever I brought up the amyloidosis they had found on nuclear imaging.

You’re Not a Bold, Knowledgeable Medical Student — You’re Just White

I knew I moved through these spaces easily for many reasons, but being White is a big one that needs to be said out loud. And when you look and feel more comfortable in a space, it is easier to perform “well,” or to sound confident. This is directly related to what academic medicine characterizes as “objective” evaluations of students, and there is data to support this.

Dust to Dust

“There’s a great neuro exam in room 5147,” my resident said as I dropped my bag in the call room. “Why don’t you go check it out?” I clutched my reflex hammer in one hand and googled the components of a neuro exam with the other as I headed towards the stairwell.

Reflections on My Medical Elective in South Africa

Doing my elective at Klerksdorp-Tshepong (K/T) Hospital Complex in my hometown of Klerksdorp gave me the opportunity to become familiar with the health system, the medical personnel and health-related issues that are prevalent in my community. It also allowed me to draw comparisons between my home country of South Africa and the United Kingdom, where I have undertaken the clinical years of my medical degree.

Tryphina Mikhail Tryphina Mikhail (1 Posts)

Contributing Writer

University of Central Florida College of Medicine


Tryphina Mikhail is a third year medical student at the University of Central Florida College of Medicine in Orlando, FL class of 2021. In 2016, she graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelor of Science in biomedical sciences and a minor in health sciences. She enjoys crocheting, playing volleyball and lindy hop swing dancing in her free time. In the future, Tryphina would like to pursue a career in primary care and academic medicine.