I extend my heartfelt gratitude to Dr. Usman Khan for affording me the incredible opportunity to partake in a one-month clinical externship at the esteemed Epic Heart and Vascular Center throughout August 2023. This experience proved to be an invaluable window into the intricacies of the US clinical health system, a privilege for which I am deeply thankful. Dr. Khan’s guidance as my preceptor during this period of observership was beyond compare. The warmth and hospitality exhibited by the entire team at the Epic Heart and Vascular Center immediately made me feel at home, smoothing the path for a transformative learning experience.
The initial week posed a slight learning curve for me as I familiarized myself with the EMR system, yet under Dr. Khan’s patient mentorship, I swiftly adapted. The duration of my externship presented me with an extensive spectrum of cases and procedures that deepened my passion for cardiology. Particularly memorable was my time spent in the Ultrasound office, where I observed Doppler and Duplex ultrasounds for the lower extremities and carotid arteries. A standout encounter involved a carotid duplex that unveiled a significant 90% stenosis in the left carotid of a patient who had presented with dizziness. Under Dr. Khan’s expert guidance, I received comprehensive instruction in interpreting ECGs, Echocardiograms, and Nuclear Stress Tests.
During my tenure, I was privileged to closely observe various outpatient clinical procedures, including Varithena, VenaSeal, and Radiofrequency ablation. Witnessing Dr. Khan’s skilled performance of a PCI procedure in the CATH lab, wherein a stent was placed in the LAD artery of a chest pain patient, left an indelible impact. The relief the procedure brought to the patient’s symptoms was truly heartening. Furthermore, I had the honor of presenting a study titled “Global Readmission Rates for Patients with Heart Failure” from the JACC journal to Dr. Khan and my colleagues, an experience that was met with Dr. Khan’s approval and fellow colleagues’ engagement.
Above all, this rotation was transformative in cultivating the art of patient interaction and communication. Shadowing Dr. Khan, I gleaned invaluable insights into patient interactions across both inpatient and clinic settings. His masterful approach, characterized by tact, care, and empathy, has left an indelible impression on me. This experience has endowed me with the skills to communicate effectively across diverse scenarios and navigate complex patient situations with finesse and compassion.
The impact of this relatively short yet profoundly impactful rotation with Dr. Khan resonates deeply with me. It has equipped me with a profound understanding of the US health system, knowledge that I believe will prove invaluable as I embark on my journey to secure a US residency. My gratitude knows no bounds as I extend my thanks to Dr. Khan and the entire staff of the Epic Heart and Vascular Center for this transformative opportunity. To those seeking an insightful immersion into the US healthcare system, I wholeheartedly endorse and recommend this rotation.