Books, Q-Banks, and Studying Resources

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  • The best podcast is Dr. Tonya Wright’s The OBG Med Student (Apple). Dr. Wright is the clerkship director at Penn State’s med school, and she recorded twenty-six 10-20 minute episodes with residents and faculty members from Penn State Hershey Medical Center. Each episode uses a great case-based Q&A back-and-forth format that is interesting and engaging. This podcast is specifically focused on APGO learning objectives that are frequently tested on the SHELF exam. It is specifically made for med students. Give it a listen!


“VEAL CHOP” was a good way to remember fetal heart tracings. This is part of fetal heart monitoring to measure fetal distress. You look at the fetal heart rate (top trace) and uterine pressure (bottom) in these traces.

One of my attendings broke down hypertension in pregnancy like this:

Lastly, for maternal-fetal physiology, remember:

  • Most stuff goes up like 30%
  • Everything goes up even more if there are twins, triplets, etc (multiple gestation)
  • Blood plasma volume goes up even more than Hgb, often leading to a dilutional anemia picture (even though the total RBC mass is up).

Skills to know/learn

  • OR: know how to:
    • Get your gloves up, scrub, get bed in/out of room at beginning/end of case, help roll patient to/from bed to table
    • Skills:
      • putting in/taking out Foley catheter,
      • suturing,
      • knot-tying
        • generally two-hand or one-hand; instrument tying isn’t as common.
        • The French knot is used to close large skin incisions (e.g., after C-sections), which is able to be buried under the skin, but you probably won’t be expected to learn that one even though it’s easy.
  • Nice, concise history
    • All OB patients should be asked the four questions — vaginal bleeding, loss of fluids, contractions, and have you felt the baby move? (note quickening is ~20 wks for primigravida and a few weeks earlier for multips).

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