McGill Alert / Alerte de McGill

Updated: Thu, 07/18/2024 - 18:12

Gradual reopening continues on downtown campus. See Campus Public Safety website for details.

La réouverture graduelle du campus du centre-ville se poursuit. Complément d'information : Direction de la protection et de la prévention.

Undergraduate Medical and Dental Education

Fundamentals of Medicine and Dentistry (FMD)

With the current curriculum implemented in 2013, the Basic Sciences have been under the banner of FMD taught in the entire first year and in the first half (Fall term) of the second year of Medicine and Dentistry, using a combination of lectures and small groups. It is divided into 10 blocks (Blocks A to J), each under the direction of a “Block Leader”, i.e., a treating clinician. These blocks, apart from the Introductory Block A, systematically follow the organ systems. Pathology is involved in all Blocks, except for Block G. In terms of content, the philosophy of the current FMD course (and of the faculty) is to teach the amount of basic science knowledge required for a family physician. It also provides more integration and exposure to the clinical experience.

A small group of medical students seated at a round table are listening to a lecture
Pathology in Fundamentals of Medicine and Dentistry (FMD)

General Pathology” (introduction to diseases, cells and tissues, cell injury and necrosis, inflammation and repair, neoplasia) is covered in Block A. “Systemic Pathology” then teaches the pathology of the different organ systems following the systems-based themes of the subsequent Blocks. Each Block is organized to integrate most aspects of medicine; they start with normal anatomy and histology, physiology, and biochemistry, followed by the pathology and relevant pharmacology, with admixed other disciplines (research, global health, evidence-based medicine, inter-professionalism, etc.). The Blocks also provide history-taking and physical examination skills in a clinical setting, intermixed with the Longitudinal Family Medicine Experience (LFME) on several afternoons in the first year; in the second year, this is replaced by hours spent in the community as part of the Community Health Alliance Project (CHAP).

Teaching of Pathology in FMD is divided into lectures and small groups. For the small groups, all are scheduled for 3 hours and most have one staff pathologist or resident as the leader. Three small groups, two in Block C (coronary artery disease and valvular heart disease) and one in Block E (diabetes), are “super integrated”, led by a pathologist and a treating clinician or fellow in the specialty.


Electives for Students at the Clinical Clerkship level (3rd or 4th Year)

There are electives in Anatomical Pathology and Ocular Pathology available. Descriptions and contacts are available on the Electives webpage

Putting it All Together (PIAT) Course (4th Year)

This is a 4-week long course (INDS 426) given in February and early March to 4th year medical students a few months prior to graduation. It comprises compulsory “core elements” and optional “selectives” divided between the Social Sciences of Medicine and the Basic Sciences; the students choose one selective in each category. 

The contribution of Pathology to PIAT is a Basic Science selective titled, “Pathology for Medical, Radiation and Surgical Oncologists” designed to prepare the students in Family Medicine and the subspecialties to care for patients with cancer. After an introductory lecture by Dr. Michel (who oversees this selective), the students are tasked with preparing a PowerPoint presentation of one or more variably complex cases of cancer in the following organ systems/categories: GU, GI, GYN, pediatric, CNS, pulmonary, hematologic, or breast. Students are given a “skeleton” PowerPoint with the case summary, relevant lab data, and imaging, with 2-3 seminal and up-to-date references with sets of questions to answer: one or two presenters lead the other students and are graded according to several criteria.

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