Doctors Dream They’re Back in Med School

A physician from the US specializing in Gastroenterology recently posted on the SERMO network, asking fellow global physicians if they ever have dreams that they’re back in medical school:

Med school was a long time ago for me. I certainly have these dreams. There’s the classic one where you’re about to take the test and you’re totally unprepared.

There’s another where I’m in 1st year and I realize I’m doing med school again because I decided that would be a good idea for some reason.  To solidify my knowledge or whatever.  And I quickly realize “this was a stupid idea and it’s going to be real hard and a lot of work and I don’t need that at all”.  Am I the only one?

Fellow physicians responded with some of their dreams: 

“Funny, I dream I’m back in college, or (true horror) back in practice. Never medical school for some reason.” – Oncology AP HCP

“I once had a dream that I was repeating med school. Strangely, I was not upset about it in my dream, which was weird.” – Other Physicians

“Occasional PTSD of sitting in neuroanatomy.” – Nephrology

“Yup, happens at times. In fact, it’s probably the most common dream (that I remember at least) – usually along the lines of being in serious jeopardy of failing out almost as I am about to graduate.” – Pediatrics

“I’ve had the classic not prepared for the test as well as the getting lost on the campus or in the hospital. Both of these are easy to interpret.” – Obstetrics & Gynecology 

My dreams are usually centered on trying to change specialties and find available residency spots-mostly in Anesthesia!! – Internal Medicine

“The recurrent dream I have is that I am supposed to take a final exam for a course that I had forgotten to attend all semester! (college). For medicine, I am supposed to make hospital rounds but I do not know how to get a list of the patients. In these disturbing dreams, I sometimes remember that I am retired and that this only a dream…” – Internal Medicine

“I’m working in the ER. Two guys in suits show up. “Doctor, it seems that there was a mistake and you never actually passed the sixth grade.” So, I actually go back to school, a la Billy Madison. After about three days, I finally realize it’s nonsense and that I have to get back to work…” – Emergency Medicine 

“I have this dream all the time. I am back in med school – sometimes my own, sometimes other places (Harvard). All my old classmates are there at their original age but I am as I am now (62). I am so happy to be back and redoing the lessons. The feeling is one of ‘now I have the maturity to really understand what I am being taught.’ Quite frankly the frequency of the dream disturbs me – I cannot exactly figure out what my subconscious is trying to tell me.” – Pediatrics

“Have had a similar dream many times. Repeating medschool after I was already in practice without any of my classmates being aware of it. Fortunately, the dream never included any financial concerns.” – Anesthesiology

“Yes, at times of stress. I am practicing as an MD but still need to Finnish school. Or I am not prepared and at an unfamiliar University.” – Emergency Medicine

“I’m 68 and still get the unprepared for class-exam dream. Less often now, but still, that was many decades ago. I get the unfamiliar hospital corridor maze dream too.” – Gastroenterology

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