GME

Alison Cesarz, MD Alison Cesarz, MD (1 Posts)

Resident Physician Contributing Writer

University of California San Diego School of Medicine


Alison (Al) Cesarz is finishing her intern year in psychiatry at the University of California San Diego. Her clinical interests include early childhood trauma, the adolescent and young adult age group, mental health in the Latino population and psychotherapy. Another passion of hers is the mental health and well being of medical students and residents. She is open and accessible to sharing her own treatment journey, collaborating on methods for improvement, and working to break mental health stigma within the walls of medicine. In her free time, she enjoys reading fiction/nonfiction, writing, trail running, cooking and exploring the natural wonders of her new home city.




Shining a Light on Medical Student and Resident Depression

During my fourth year of medical school, I was completely unaware that I was suffering from clinical depression. Even now as I write this, I struggle to put my finger on how it all started. Was my appetite the first thing to go? Or the loss of enjoyment in socializing and sex? Maybe it was all three at once. It is truly too hard to tell.

A Primer on Loan Repayment and Finance Options for Residents & Fellows

Career and specialty choice aside, the debt accrued for physicians is very real. Obtaining accessible and accurate advice on what to do with that debt is, at best, disappointing. My goal for this article is to educate, provide adequate resources that can help alleviate stress, set you — the reader and colleague — up to be financially successful, and hopefully make you “money wise” when it comes to your early career.

Battling Burnout and Our Quest for Perfection

Two months ago, I woke up one morning at 5:30 a.m., as usual. I played my gym motivation playlist in the shower, ate oatmeal for breakfast, and headed out the door, as usual. I swore at the car that swerved into the lane in front of me without signaling, as usual. An hour later, I pre-rounded on one of my favorite patients, a man with wide, childlike eyes who had a great deal of difficulty expressing his feelings.

Resident Wellness is a Lie (Part 2 of 3)

My partner Evan’s third year of residency completed his trajectory toward what is commonly called “burnout.” Two out of the 10 residents in his class left the program. In an already understaffed department, the remaining residents picked up the slack, taking extra call and working longer days. The general misery index among his cohort skyrocketed.

February is the Hardest Month

Overwhelmed and exhausted, a resident recently came to me to ask, “Can we do something about call?” Defeat and despair had taken over his psyche. He felt unable to cope with the tasks of residency, including the seemingly never-ending demands of fielding consults, pages and patient needs. He imagined that the problem could be solved by taking less overnight call.

Dear NBME and FSMB, I watch HGTV more than Netflix: A Response to the Invited Commentary on USMLE Step 1

The recent ruminations of Drs. Katsufrakis and Chaudhry in the form of an invited commentary in Academic Medicine, entitled “Improving Residency Selection Requires Close Study and Better Understanding of Stakeholder Needs,” has garnered a significant amount of attention on Twitter. Drs. Katsufrakis and Chaudhry’s commentary was in response to a well-written and well-reasoned article by a group of medical students published in the same journal recommending the USMLE Step 1 transition from a numeric score to pass/fail.

Joshua D. Niforatos, MTS Joshua D. Niforatos, MTS (1 Posts)

Medical Student Guest Writer

Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine


Joshua D. Niforatos, MTS is in his last year of medical school in Cleveland, Ohio. He aspires to be an emergency medicine physician actively involved in clinical research and all things social emergency medicine and advocacy. Joshua also watches a lot of HGTV.