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Med Student "Personality Disorders"

Kendra_new_headshotKendra Campbell -- As part of my psych rotation, we have lectures once a week on various psychiatric disorders. The most recent lecture was on personality disorders. In the beginning of the lecture, the psychiatrist warned us that we’d find certain characteristics of the disorders to be ones that we actually possess. However, she reminded us that this doesn’t necessarily mean that we have the disorder, because we don’t have the traits to the point of pathology. Of course, even with that disclaimer, I noted traits that I display, and it caused me to pause! I also realized that many of the traits are ones that are particularly applicable to medical students. So, I’ll list the disorders, and note the specific relevance to med students.

Paranoid Personality Disorder – Reluctant to confide in others due to unwarranted fears that the information will be used against him/her.

Med Student Disorder – Sometimes, we hide things from others because we fear that people will think we are incapable!

Schizoid Personality Disorder – Shows emotional coldness, detachment or flattened affectivity.

Med Student Disorder – While we’re supposed to display compassion, aren’t we frequently supposed to hide our true emotions to patients?

Schizotypal Personality Disorder – Displays odd thinking and speech.

Med Student Disorder – The relevance here is profound! With all of our medical jargon, and the way we have to think about the world, who out there can’t admit to having this one?!

Borderline Personality Disorder – Has an unstable sense of self.

Med Student Disorder – We endure all the trials and tribulations of med school and continue having to live up to ever-changing expectations.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder – Has a grandiose sense of self-importance, believes that he or she is special and unique, and can only be understood by, or associate with, other special people or institutions.

Med Student Disorder – I don’t even think this one needs an explanation.

Histrionic Personality Disorder – Displays rapidly shifting and shallow expressions of emotion.

Med Student Disorder – Isn’t this necessary in order to see twenty different patients with serious illnesses in a short period of time?

Antisocial Personality Disorder – Irritability and failure to plan ahead.

Med Student Disorder – Hopefully, this one only applies during times of stress.

Avoidant Personality Disorder – Avoids activities that involve significant interpersonal contact.

Med Student Disorder – Ummm, hello?! Have you ever spent three days with only your books and loads of caffeine?!

Dependent Personality Disorder – Has difficulty making decisions without an excessive amount of advice and reassurance from others.

Med Student Disorder – How much do we look to our residents and attendings for direction and advice?

Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder – Has a preoccupation with details, rules, and lists, and is devoted to perfectionism and work, to the exclusion of leisure activities and friendships.

Med Student Disorder - Another one that doesn’t need an explanation! I must admit, that I might be the queen of lists.

So, there you are! Which personality disorder fits YOU?

Disclaimer: I am not implying that med students actually have all these traits, or the disorders! Rather, I'm attempting (perhaps poorly) to point out the humorous parallels between our lives, and the disorders' traits.

July 11, 2008 in Kendra Campbell | Permalink


Many of our professors and teachers are narcissists, but medical students? I do not think there are that many.

Posted by: YS | Jul 14, 2008 8:22:57 AM

I totally agree with you both. As for my two cents on the matter, medical students often get this narcissistic disorder whenever they deal with those students in the lower years. probably rubbed off from their superiors...

Posted by: PR | Jul 16, 2008 9:25:12 AM

youre Tolly rigth... All the medical student need at least being a little narcisistic and Obsessive to survive the life in hospital.

Posted by: Fernado Felix | Jul 17, 2008 9:44:18 PM

hey kendra! i loved this entry...this is your funniest, yet. :-)

Posted by: Stephanie | Jul 18, 2008 8:25:20 AM

Being human and influenced by daily interactions, I am familiar with and prone to all types of personality disorders.
I have been identified by others as having a tinge of each, some more profoundly than others. I can understand where the ideas come from - they have read many articles and books!

Posted by: Edward | Jul 18, 2008 1:35:06 PM

Exelent Kendra, I have all of them

Posted by: Laura Perez | Jul 19, 2008 8:10:47 PM

I love it Kendra,,, I think it is totally true!!!

Posted by: Haifa | Jul 22, 2008 4:02:21 AM

looks like i have 'em all.. haha.. well,, life's good..

Posted by: dian prastiti utami | Jul 24, 2008 9:53:07 PM

“Spirit of the Place” is definitely a great read.
It’s considered Mr. Shem’s most ambitious work.
Anyone interested should visit http://www.samuelshem.com for more information.

Posted by: dutch | Aug 1, 2008 8:56:22 AM

Hi there, I liked your article, it's amazing how

we can find a link between ourselves & the world

around us, sure all of us have passed through some

of those characters at point of time..Thanks Kendra

Posted by: Dr.Maryam | Aug 8, 2008 12:07:07 AM

Love it.

Posted by: Dragonfly | Sep 10, 2008 10:27:13 PM

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