Ask Me

If you are a medical student or a doctor, and you have any question regarding any topic discussed or related to this blog, for example:

-Undergraduate studies
-Postgraduate studies, specially in Canada
-Writing your CV
-Interview strategies
-Hematology
-Other related topics

Then you are welcome to post your questions here. I will do my best to help you or refer you to who might help.

About me: I’m a medical graduate from King AbdulAziz University-Jeddah, KSA and is studying internal medicine and planning to go for clinical hematology later. Currently I’m training in the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.

Good luck

Advertisements

34 comments

  1. Yasser

    Hypertension

    Please guide me to a web portal that may update my awareness about hypertension and the causes behind it.

  2. The Blood Doctor

    Hello Yasser

    That’s an excellent question because hypertension is a vey common health problem.

    Keep in mind: when you are browsing the internet for medical information, you have to go to trustable web sites, like those for well-known medical institutes. Being able to read in English is a great advantage.

    Regarding finding medical information on the internet you may check this page:
    http://www.vch.ca/centreforpatients/resources.htm

    Regarding hypertension specifically check these:

    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000468.htm

    http://www.bpassoc.org.uk/

    http://www.hypertension.ca/chep/public/publicEducationva.asp

    The first website is a medical encyclopedia which covers almost all health problems with illustrations.

    The other 2 are dedicated for hypertension.

    Hope these help. Just write again if u need anything else.

    Wish you a lasting good health.

  3. yasser

    Thanks a lot Dr ..

    Actually hypertension is a special interest of mine because I’ve been on medication since my high school.

    Once again thank you

  4. zezo

    Hi doctor
    It is really nice from you to try to help the young doctors in getting acceptance in Canada as this is a very complicated and vague process for most of the medical students.
    Now let me tell you, I am a Medical Graduate from Saudi Arabia and I will be sponsored by my university to go for Canada for postgraduate medical studies in Internal Medicine, now I need sometime to complete my process to get a job in the university which may take several months, and according to my knowledge I will need a sponsorship letter from my sponsor plus the MOHE paper + Graduation certificate + transcript + CV + MCCEE score + passport, so I hope I will be able to apply for 2008 residency programs

    my questions:
    when will be the last date in accepting papers from Saudi Arabian graduates in Canadian universities for residency programs in 2008?

    what are the papers and documents needed apart from what I mentioned above?

    After I send my papers to the Saudi Bureau, will they start sending it to the top universities first (McGill, UBC, UofT), or is it totally dependent on my luck?

    can I get acceptance in more than one university?

    thanks in advance, wish you all the good luck in your career and studies wherever you go, and waiting for your reply.

  5. The Blood Doctor

    Hello Zezo and welcome to my blog.

    I’m really grateful for your questions as they summarize what most applicants find vague.

    According to the chart posted on the Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau website : http://saudibureau.org/applcations-chart.pdf
    , applications are supposed to be recieved maximally by July.

    It is often so difficult to apply in the same year you start your job in a Saudi university. It happened with some people but not with me or any of my friends.

    Although another year of waiting may seem long, you will eventually find it very beneficial in terms of clinical and research experience,improving your CV, self-confidence and financial support. You can even save some money during this year so you can spend it in Canada!

    In my own experience: I started my job in KAAUH in Oct 2005, sent my application papers on May 2006, had my interviews in Oct-Nov 2006, and started residency in July 2007.

    The application papers include all what you mentioned in addition to 3 recommendation letters (preferable from Canadian trainees), the inetrnship certificate and personal photos. For more details visit the Saudi Bureau website again. It is
    http://www.saudibureau.org
    This site should be your friend.

    You will need to send no less than 9 certified copies of your certificates and transcript. If you had the TOEFL you might want to include a copy of the result letter too. I suggest that you also write a personal statement. It really makes a difference.

    When you send these papers, include a letter to the Cultural attache, describing who you are, and the specialty you are applying for. In addition, mention that you want your application to be sent to any specific universities (whether it is the best in the specialty you want, or you have a family member living there…etc). Your application will be sent to 8 universite usually, including the ones you mention in your letter.

    Can you get accepted in more than one university? Oh yeah 🙂 When you receive the interview offers, try to cluster them close to each other. If you got an acceptance in more than one place, then you will be the one choosing, not them! Applying in internal medicine residency gives you a really good chance of having alot of offers and interviews. Surgery-based specialty applicants are not that lucky, although some are (mashalla).

    In my blog there is a postgradute medical training section. Take a look. If you have ANY other Q, don’t hesitate to wrie again. I would really like to help. Wish you all the best.

  6. zezo

    thank you doctor
    it seems that I may not be able to start in July 2008, so I have to wait till 2009, well I think that will be even better so I may apply earlier and get a better position enshallah, anyway thank you so much for the valuable information and I think I will need to ask you some more questions later on so please be patient with me lol
    all the best doctor w 3ogbal ma terja3e belsalamah enshallah

  7. The Blood Doctor

    Welcome back Zezo…

    You still have the option of sending your application papers as soon as you get the financial guarantee from your work. No body knows! Maybe you would still have a chance.

    If you did that and didn’t get accepted for 2007 then send your application again on May 2008 to start on 2009. But remember to update your CV so they won’t think you did nothing to improve yourself for about 6 months.

    Try to be involved in research and volunteer activities. These improve your chances.

    You are welcome anytime if you have any further questions. Good luck.

  8. Rabaa

    السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته
    First I would like to thank for your efforts.
    Second :
    I am a 4th year medical student and I would like to have medical training in the summer in Canada. Where to check my options?
    Third:
    I would also like to know more about getting involved in medical research or even having a bachelor degree . I tried to search online and actually I get lost 🙂
    Regards,

  9. The Blood Doctor

    Hi Rabaa,
    Thanks for dropping by 🙂

    Regarding an elective in Canada:
    This is offered by some universities for students in their final year. I know University of Trornto is one of them, however University of British Columbia is not unfortunately.

    Here are some webpages from the websites of some universities. Hope they help as a start:

    University of Alberta
    http://www.med.ualberta.ca/education/ugme/clinicaled/electives_edmonton.cfm?yr=3
    International students contact info available

    University of Calgary
    http://medicine.ucalgary.ca/undergrad/ume/electives

    University of Western Ontario
    http://www.schulich.uwo.ca/education/ume/index.php?page=VSEInternationalApp

    University of Toronto
    http://www.facmed.utoronto.ca/programs/md/curriculum/electives/visiting/international/guidelines.htm

    McGill University
    http://www.medicine.mcgill.ca/ugme/electives/visiting_intro_en.htm

    Dalhousie Univerity
    http://undergraduate.medicine.dal.ca/electives.htm

    Regarding the 2nd question: I am personally still looking for a research opportunity myself! I believe one of the ways is finding a supervisor first. I’m not sure how!

    I’ll certainly post an answer here if I found one!

    Wish you all the best Rabaa

  10. Bassem

    Clinical electives in Canada for students have been over flooded a long time ago for this year’s summer. The positions have been filled months ago and only a lucky few got accepted in Canada’s universities using the official means. Of course there are the luckier few who managed to get positions for training through personal contacts!

  11. Dr.Intern

    السلام عليكم ورحمة الله
    الحقيقة المدونة غاية في الروعة والشمول
    كثير من الاسئلة اللي كانت تراودني حصلت لها اجابات هنا

    راح انتهي من فترة الامتياز الشهر هذا وانا خلصت اختبار الكناديان الشهر الماضي بس الى الان ماطلعت النتايج

    ابغى اسأل عن ال
    observship
    في كندا هل تفيدني في زيادة فرص القبول وكيف اقدم عليها ؟؟
    وكذلك ابغى استفسر عن ال
    research opportunity in canada … would it help me in my application …

    • The Blood Doctor

      أهلا
      Dr.Intern
      و عليكم السلام و رحمة الله و بركاته

      تسعدني استفادتك و اتمنى لك نتيجة رائعة في الامتحان

      أعتقد أن فترة
      observership
      في كندا تفيد إذا كنت تعلم بالضبط أي جامعة تريد. عندما تقضي معهم وقتا فقد تعجبهم مواصفاتك و هذا قد يزيد فرصتك في القبول
      أيضا قد يفيدك هذا بعد القبول في التأقلم الأسرع

      لكن لا تنس أنه عادة لن تكون عندك رخصة للتدريب أو لمزاولة الطب و هذا يعني أنك ستكون عادة مجرد متفرج لا أكثر. لن يكون الوضع رائعا لك أو لهم
      الموضوع أيضا
      مكلف عادة : في السفر و السكن

      بصراحة أنا شخصيا لا أراها ضرورية إلا إذا كان المجال الذي تنوي التقديم فيه يصعب فيه القبول جدا

      لكن إذا قررت فما عليك إلا أن تبحث عن موقع القسم و ترسل إيميل لرئيس البرنامج
      Program director
      و تسأله عن إمكانية ذلك في الفترة التي تريد

      بالنسبة للأبحاث بشكل عام فهي مهمة جدا لكن بإمكانك الاشتراك فيها في السعودية
      لا أعتقد أن إجراءها في كندا فكرة عملية فقد تأخذ شهورا كثيرة جدا حتى تنتهي

      بالتوفيق

  12. Dr.Intern

    شكرا على هذه الاجابة الوافية والسريعة
    I want to apply for radiation oncology …
    And I’ve heard that it’s so competitive there …
    I personally know 4 saudis waiting for a chance to get a spot and only one get a spot although one of them trying since 3 yrs ….

    so , any advice for me to increase my chance …

    Do you know any resident in this specialty so that I can contact him ….

    again , thank you so much for your help ….

  13. Dr.Intern

    Good Morning ….
    How are you doing doctor ??

    These days I’m preparing my papers to be sent to the saudi bureau and I’ve questions regarding my application for residency …

    I got the sponsorship letter from my university and I asked them about the approval letter { قرار ابتعاث Decree letter } and they told me that it’s a confidential letter and should be sent directly by the university to the MOHE and it will take 1 to 2 months to be ready … and they told me that you can send your papers without the approval letter { قرار ابتعاث Decree letter } and the Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau can process your papers and when the approval letter is ready the ministry will send it directly to Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau ….
    So, Can I send my papers these days ?? because every thing is ready to be sent and I don’t want to apply late since I’ve heard that the priority is for those who applied earlier …and also the deadline for application is september 1 ….

    Lastly , I want to ask if there is any way to bring the approval by myself to speed up the process ??

    Is the approval letter that they require to start processing my papers same as that for the usual scholarship { قرار ابتعاث Decree letter } ?? if there is any difference please tell me because it may shorten waiting time for the letter ??

    Thank you so much for your cooperation .

    I sent this message 4 days ago to 2 of personnel in Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau but unfortunately , no one answered me …

    I’m waiting for your answer because I will travel to the ministry in Riyadh tomorrow . if there is a need ….

    • The Blood Doctor

      Hi again Dr.Intern,

      I’m not sure which university is sponsoring you. In my case, when I applied in 2006 through KAAU, I only had
      خطاب الضمان المالي
      from the university.
      There was another document that was sent directly from MOHE to the Saudi cultural bureau.

      If things these days are the same as they used to be, then you probably need to send your documents now with a copy of the letter u already have. It is unlikey that there is anything you can do to speed up the process. It shouldn’t be very long though.

      That’s what I know
      و الله أعلم
      Hope that helps. Let me know about your good news.

      • Dr.Intern

        Thank you so much Doctor for this reply because I was searching for an answer since 6 days in many websites …

        It seems that the approval letter to be sent by MOHE and not me …

        Another question if you don’t mind :

        The exam score has not shown yet and I’ve heard that Saudi cultural bureau can take the result directly from Medical Council of Canada if I give them consent … is that right??

        Again , thank you for this great help …

  14. The Blood Doctor

    Dr.Intern

    I apologize for not getting back to you earlier. I’m sure you found out that the answer is Yes. The Saudi Bureau can obtain the results on its own.

    I hope your application process is going well. All the best.

  15. Dr. Ahmad

    السلام عليكم..

    كيف حالك دكتورة مها؟
    جزاكي الله ألف خيرعلى وقتك وجهدك الذي تبذلينه لمساعدة الأطباء.

    أنا طبيب أردني تخرجت شهر 8 سنة 2008 وأنهيت سنة الامتياز هذا الشهر و زوجتي طبيبة أيضا تقوم بعمل سنة الامتياز في الأردن حاليا وستنهيها بنهاية شهر 4 السنة القادمة ان شاء الله.
    زوجتي لديها اقامة دائمة في كندا أما أنا فلا أملكها ولكي أستطيع أن أحصل عليها من زوجتي يجب على زوجتي التواجد في كندا خلال تقديمها طلب منحي الاقامة الدائمة وكما تعلمين أنه بالنسبة للطبيب الغير مبتعث من دولته فهنالك شرط أساسي لكي يستطيع التقدم للماتش الكندي وهو أن يكون كندي الجنسية أو حاملا للاقامة الدائمة .(Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident)
    ولتجاوز هذه المشكلة فكرت بالمشاركة بعمل بحث علمي في كندا لمدة سنة أو أكثر وخلال تواجدي هناك مع زوجتي أستطيع الحصول على الاقامة الدائمة و تقديم الامتحانات الكندية و بنفس الوقت أزيد من فرصة قبولي في برنامج الاقامة بأحد مستشفيات كندا.

    خلال الأشهر الماضية قمت بمراسلة العديد من الأطباء المختصين بالأبحاث العلمية لكن للأسف لم أتلقى أي رد من معظمهم !

    أريد مساعدتك ونصيحتك وشكرا.

    • The Blood Doctor

      أهلا بك دكتور أحمد
      عذرا لتأخري في الرد عليك
      لا أخفي عنك أن سؤالك يخرج عن نطاق ما أعرفه

      أظن أن الخطوة الأولى إذا قررت البحث عن مشرف علمي هو أن تكون متأكدا من مكان إقامتك في البداية و عارفا بالمجال الذي ترغب في إكمال دراستك فيه
      ربما تحصل على ردود إذا كنت في كندا و راسلت السكرتارية/المساعدين طالبا موعدا شخصيا مع مشرف بحث محتمل
      وجها لوجه

      أتمنى لك كل التوفيق

  16. روزا

    بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
    السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته اولا ,يعطيكي الف عافية دكتورة ماقصرتي في اجاباتك وربي يجعلها في ميزان حسناتك…………
    ثانيا,اود الاستفسار عن موضوع بالنسبة لي مصيري وعلى اساسه بيتحدد مستقبلي بعد الله عز وجل……….
    انا من احدى خريجات كلية الطب وارغب في اكمال دراستي في كندا في الباطنة ومن ثم امراض الدم(حلم حياتي) مع العلم باني حاملة لفيروس التهاب الكبد ب
    ونتائج التحاليل الاخيرة كالتالي:
    HbsAg +ve HbeAg _ve liver enzymes:normal

    وسؤالي هل ساواجه مشكلة بالقبول ويظل الحلم حلما ؟
    اتمنى من العلي القدير ان تصلك رسالتي

    • The Blood Doctor

      و عليكم السلام و رحمة الله و بركاته
      عزيزتي روزا
      أتمنى لك الشفاء و تمام العافية بإذن الله
      أعتذر عن عدم الرد السريع عليك
      و لكني قمت ببعض البحث في هذا الموضوع
      فوجدت أن هذه الحالة لن تكون عائقا أمام رغبتك في الالتحاق بمعظم برامج التدريب في الخارج بإذن الله
      قد تكون هناك استثناءات و تفاصيل لا أعلمها بالطبع

      أتمنى أن لا يقف شيء في وجه طموحك
      و أرجو لك كامل التوفيق

  17. Dr wisdom

    Hi Dr :
    I am a doctor working in KKUH,in Riyadh.
    one of my famale relative is newly accepted in BCU as a fellow in nephro but she dosnt know how to pick her living place .
    can u nicly name furnished apartment that is scured .
    bec she has been searching in websites to arrange before her coming .
    sorry if the Q is not like most of what have been posted
    Good luck .

    • The Blood Doctor

      Hi Dr.Wisdom,

      I assume you mean UBC (University of British Columbia) in Vancouver.
      If that’s true: then I suggest that she either stays for 2-3 weeks in a hotel, or a short-term furnished apartment rental like these ones :

      http://www.suiteliving.ca
      (I used their services before and the experience was good).

      After she arrives she can look for another long-term rental (for 1-2 years) while she is here.
      Usually the prices are much higher when renting short-term (weeks/months) in comparison to when the rent is yearly.
      And she can always search on Craig’s list
      http://vancouver.en.craigslist.ca
      but be cautiuos when using this site and never rent a place or pay any money through this site unless she sees the apartment and meet the person first.

      The Saudi Club in Vancouver will be a great way to know about good apartments too. Let her join their mailing list before/after she comes.
      http://www.saudihouse.org

      Hope that helps- and good luck for both of you.

  18. linda1st

    I would like to ask what you think about non-progressors and elite controllers in regards to the HIV virus?

  19. Sawsan Mohamed

    Hello Dr.

    i was so fortunate to get my hands on ur precious blog, it was so useful for me and it answered lot of my Q’s
    i’m a Fresh medical graduate 2010 of KSU and i applied for King abdullah scholarship

    now preparing to take the MCCEE exam inshalla soon
    so i can apply for next year Residency program in Canada (pediatrics )

    while am doing that can you give me tips how to improve my CV and how to write a personal statement?

    the 2nd Q is regarding the research, does it have to be published in a Canadian or American Journal to be beneficial in my CV ?

    the 3rd are my chances is good as for the specialty i choose which is Pediatrics in Canada ?

    thank u so much in advance 🙂
    and God bliss you for ur great efforts

    • The Blood Doctor

      Hi Sawsan,

      Sorry for not being able to reply earlier.
      Congratulations on your graduation and I hope your professional journey continues to be successful.

      There are lots of excellent resources on how to write a CV and a personal statement, specifically targeting health care professionals.

      These include books that you will find on amazon,and also lots of great webpages including:
      AAFP http://tinyurl.com/27qvjbe
      ACP http://tinyurl.com/looef3

      The answer to your second question is: No. Research experience of any sort is appreciated and it would be great if it gets published. As long as it is a peer reviewed journal then that should be ok.

      I hope I can tell you how good the chances are to be accepted in pediatrics but I don’t know. My advice to you is to work hard and do your best. This will make shine among all other candidates and you will get the spot if that’s what Allah wants for you 🙂

      Take care and wish you all the best.

  20. memo

    دكتورة سلام عليكم
    انا طالب بجامعة الملك عبدالعزيز في السنة السادسة ، انوي التدرب في جامعة ماكجيل
    في شهر اكتوبر من الانتيرنشب ، هل القبول سهل في تخصصات طب الباطنة ، ام تنصحين بالتوجه لجامعة تورنتو وغيرها؟
    السؤال الثاني ما هو نظام طالب الانتيرنشب هناك بعد القبول ، حضوره للعيادات ، فحصه للمرضى ، ومن هذا القبيل ، شوية شرح لو سمحتي عن هذه الامور وشوية من وقتك بارك الله فيكي.
    شكرا

    • The Blood Doctor

      و عليكم السلام و رحمة الله
      أهلا و سهلا بك

      بصراحة لا علم لي بتدريب الامتياز للسعوديين في الجامعات الكندية
      فلم أقم أنا بشيء مماثل و لا تتاح الفرصة على حد علمي لذلك في المدينة التي أدرس فيها

      لكن بشكل عام: المتوقع من الطالب سيعتمد بشكل أساسي على نوع الرخصة الطبية التي ستعطى له
      فإن كانت رخصة للملاحظة فقط
      Obsevrorship
      فهذا سيعني انه لن يسمح له بفحص المرضى، لكن يمكن أن يرافق الفريق الطبي و يحضر المحاضرات العلمية و غيرها

      أما اذا كانت رخصة أخرى للتدريب فهذا قد يعني أنه قد يسمح له بفحص المرضى …لا أتوقع أن الموضوع سيشمل مناوبات و ما إلى ذلك

      بالتوفيق

  21. Dr.heartbeat

    Hey
    I’m a 5th year medial student ,in KAU jeddah
    in the past 2 weeks i was searching for an observership outside our kingdom and I’m thinking about Vancouver , and I heard about university of british Columbia.
    to be honest I’m afraid to get through this new experience specially I’m usually do my summer training in our hospitals and as u know it will be a huge step for me
    so plz if u have any tips or information plz write it down, i need this help doctor. .

    • The Blood Doctor

      Hi Dr.Heartbeat
      I apologize for not replying to you earlier…
      You must have made a decision by now….the only thing that I could say is that if you are doing an elective or observation period abroad because you are planning to apply for postgraduate residency training in the same institution: make sure you are ready for the experience (in terms of medical knowledge and comfort in dealing with patients) before going ahead, because the impression the candidate makes can make or break the opportunity….

      All the best

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s