It’s That Season Again

With flu season just around the corner, that means flu shots! For women that are pregnant, the flu shot can be an important prevention method. Since pregnant women are more prone to the flu, it can help to prevent the need for Tamiflu in the future and any of the risks that could follow with Tamiflu use.

With the new shots for 2015-2016 being released, it is time to see your local pharmacist for a flue shot.

http://outbreaknewstoday.com/flu-shots-first-doses-of-fluzone-for-2015-2016-flu-season-released-to-the-us-96588/

And That One Time, In Pharmacy School

Today we received a project in class to write a piece for Time magazine. The minimum word count was 300 words and the max 1000. When all is said and done, this rounds out to be 1 to 3 pages long single spaced. I racked my brain for quite a while just to find a subject. I finally settled on writing about sleep deprivation and some of the over-the -counter products that you can take to help if you are unable to fall asleep. Then followed it by racking my brain some more to write 300 words. Even still, it is a scary thought to just write a paper to time magazine. It is even scarier to know that my name will be on that paper when I turn it in. There is no going back and it will forever be attached to me. It was a good reminder to always put your best foot forward.

Winded

As the quarter is winding down, I am closer and closer to finishing my review. It is a great feeling to know that I will soon be able to turn in my review. It is also a daunting to receive feedback on my writing. At this point, I just want someone to tell me some revisions to make rather than just rejecting my review without revisions.

This has been an incredible learning experience but one that has been frustrating. It is hard to write a review and not bring your own opinion in to the equation, especially when there is no clear answer to the question you are asking.

Hopefully these next few weeks will not fly by as quick as the past 7 weeks have gone and I will feel like life is moving at a lovely pace again. That could just be wishful thinking.

When the Confidence Interval Crosses 1

As i was reviewing section 3 of my manuscript today, I made a startling discovery about all of the sources I am citing. The confidence interval comparing fetal outcomes to the general populations all crossed 1. In terms of statistical data, this means you have no discovered anything. To quote out professor of statistics, “When the confidence interval crosses 1, this means you are 100% sure of nothing”. It is beginning to become painfully clear why Tamiflu has reminded a pregnancy category C medication when I keep reading that the risks are not found to be statistically significant; it is because the not all of the statistics support the statement. The rate of babies that are born with malformations in the general population that have not had a known exposure to any influenza virus or any teratogenic medications compared to the rates of fetal malformations in those treated with Tamiflu are similar. However; in a study conducted by HJ Dustan et al., an odd ratio analysis was performed to assess the likelihood of these occurrences being related to the medication and the confidence interval crossed 1. Unfortunately, this does not provide me with evidence that will be statistically supported about the teratogenicity of the drug. It does not suggest that the drug will cause malformations and it also does not suggest the drug won’t cause malformations.

All information was found in Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecologists by HJ Dustan et al.

Is It Appropriate

I was reviewing some of my notes and sources the other day when I noticed that one of my sources if a review. I have decided that I will not site that review directly and refer to their sources but it probed a question in me; is it appropriate to site a review article when writing a review?

I am hoping that using the sources this review has will provide me with more information to use in my review but I am wondering if it is taboo to use another review to write your own review. Does any one have any opinions on the subject?

Looking to The Next Stage

Section 3 of my manuscript is due this Wednesday and after continuing my research and writing, I am starting to wonder how I will write the conclusion. My worry is that I will have nothing productive to add to the literature that is already out there. I do not want to go through all this work and have accomplished nothing. I keep reminding myself that this is the first review I am writing and I will improve tremendously with practice. Time will tell if my work will be seen as productive in the scientific community.

Project After Project

This quarter seems like there have been more projects than I have had in any other quarter. It is more work than I have ever had to deal with in my life but I am starting to enjoy the growth. I am hoping that I will look back one day and feel like I have made leaps and bounds in every aspect of my learning and writing. My goal for the next week is to spend at least 30 minutes a day dedicated to each of my projects that I have. Initially, I felt like that was not enough time but it is also 30 minutes more than I would have spent doing the projects without making it a goal. Next week, I need to write part 3 of my Tamiflu project, work on an oncology debate project and also work on a natural products project. Luckily the latter 2 of the 3 are in groups and I will be working as part of a team. This next week will be very busy but I know I will get through it.