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Potential Solutions to Medical Student Burnout

Volpintesta, Edward MD

doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000002787
Letters to the Editor

General practitioner, Bethel Medical Group, Bethel, Connecticut;

Disclosures: None reported.

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To the Editor:

Maybe there is something of value to learn from the business schools on how to handle burnout.1 But I think that after a grueling four years of college in preparation for medical school, many students are exhausted and in “preburnout.” Medical school just accelerates the process. I remember sitting in my undergraduate organic chemistry class and wondering what organic chemistry had to do with being a doctor. I still wonder. Even worse, I still remember the hours I spent painfully memorizing the Krebs citric acid cycle. Occasionally, when I am browsing in a bookstore, I page through a Medical College Admission Test preparation book. The questions about osmosis, semipermeable membranes, osmolality, and the Krebs citric acid cycle are still there—even though I have never used this information as a doctor. My point is, are the four years of “premed” studies really necessary for medical school?

Edward Volpintesta, MD

General practitioner, Bethel Medical Group, Bethel, Connecticut;

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1. Pathipati AS, Cassel CK. Addressing student burnout: What medical schools can learn from business schools. Acad Med. 2018;93:1607–1609.
© 2019 by the Association of American Medical Colleges