“Did you go through the esophagograms?”” asked Tanya with immense anxiety on her face. To which Ruchika confidently replied, “Yeah, I remember how the rat-tail deformity looks like.”
Clinical MCQs are a hot topic of discussion among medical students appearing for the NEET PG, FMGE & NEXT exams. These questions are considered as the biggest hurdles in cracking these exams. How to overcome these hurdles & how to perform exceptionally well in these exams? Let us discuss.
Why these questions are considered as biggest hurdles?
The upcoming NEXT exam & the evolving NEET-PG & FMGE exam are now mainly focusing on the application of clinical knowledge. MCQs asked in these exams are lengthy and confusing. Moreover, they look more complicated when they have attached X-rays, slides, USG & lab reports. Since the students need to put multiple facts together, analyze & only then answer can be derived, MCQs in upcoming NEXT exam will be perceived as more difficult than NEET-PG & FMGE.
How to prepare yourself for NEXT pattern questions?
Due to overlapping of subjects & vertical & horizontal integrations there is no clear line of demarcation as to questions asked belong to which subjects. So rather than studying the lengthy subjects in a traditional manner, better to identify important topics & study related parts to these topics from various subjects. Say for example, Mycobacteria tuberculosis is to be read from microbiology, pathology, pharmacology & medicine because MCQs on TB will have symptoms, microscopic slides, cultural characteristics & side effects of ATT.
Making notes always adds that extra edge to your performance by retaining information for a longer time. Moreover, notes will save your time during revision.
Identifying key features
While studying try to grasp the most characteristics features in a disease. These can be age of presentation, specific signs, triads, or any differentiating clinical features.
Referring important images
Study images while you are reading text or going through any video lecture. Say, if you are reading hiatus hernia, how does it look on barium swallow? Or if you read about Cullen sign, how does it look on clinical examination? Pathology slides, X-rays, Barium swallow, fundoscopy views are hot topics in the exams. Join Bright EduWorld Free demo class for more image-based questions Demo Videos
Follow us on instagram & facebook to get regular exposure to these kind of MCQs.
How to solve clinical MCQs?
- It is important to read the whole MCQ before you start analyzing the question. Reading the question halfway increases the chances of losing important information that might help to differentiate between options that are quite close.
- Try to analyze the case & arrive at a diagnosis even if it is not asked. Arriving at the diagnosis always helps in solving MCQs. Search for clues like age, risk factors, characteristic signs, symptoms or triads.
- Never miss the negative histories which may guide to diagnosis. They often help to rule out options that stand quite close. And last but not the least avoid taking stress and solve till the end.
Dr. Kainat Moosa
Medical Content Writer