This course is the first of a longitudinal experience in behavioral sciences. It comprises the study of human behavior from the normal and healthy perspective, as a basis to understand the onset and development of mental illness throughout the different stages of the life cycle. The first aim of this course is to differentiate the NORMAL functioning of the mind and its interaction with body, so as to distinguish what is NOT NORMAL or ABNORMAL.
Another goal of this course is to expose the medical students to basic concepts of psychiatry that will be used in the medical field. Psychiatry includes everything that cannot be categorized in one of the traditional basic sciences. It encompasses areas that are fundamental to modern medical practice, including brain behavior correlation, ethical issues and the economic forces affecting the future of medicine. Its covers not only the psychiatric history but also the emotional development of people throughout their life cycle, including biological and psychological aspects, the development and meaning of symptoms; reaction to sickness, and treatment, including psychological, somatic and interdisciplinary modalities. Therapeutic techniques including psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, hypnosis, emergency techniques and crisis intervention will also be discussed.
Finally, the basic concepts of psychiatry will be discussed, beginning with the various models that try to understand psychopathology. Mental mechanisms of defenses, symptoms and disorders are discussed throughout the semester. A thorough analysis of the development of the DSM-IV-TR (and DSM-IV) will be presented, together with study of mental diseases it includes and its approach to the formulation of differential diagnosis. Basic psychopharmacology and principles of psychotherapy will be presented, together with basic principles involved in therapeutic hypnosis, electroshock and other psychological and physical treatment. Special emphasis will be given to substance abuse, including alcohol, the substance induced disorders and the developmental disorders, the etiology and pathophysiology of mental illness, the care of mentally retarded, geriatric patients, children born infected from HIV virus, dying patients, and in the increasing specified and effectiveness of the various psychiatric therapies. At the end of the course, the medical student should be prepared to encounter patients, interview them, write psychiatric histories, diagnose and propose a treatment plan.
Pharmacology and Therapeutics is a one year course designed to provide an understanding of drug action in the framework of human physiology, biochemistry, microbiology and pathophysiology and thus, to familiarize second year medical students with the fundamental principles of drug action and disposition, adverse effects, drug-drug interactions, and contraindications in the context of drug classes so as to perform well on the Step 1 Board exam and to obtain a foundation for future clinical decision-making with respect to medical therapies. Students will learn pharmacology in a conceptual framework that fosters mechanism-based learning rather than rote memorization, and that allows for ready incorporation of new drugs and drug classes into the student's fund of knowledge.
Pharmacology builds on key concepts of physiology, biochemistry, microbiology and pathology to explain the mechanisms, uses, and adverse effects of pharmaceuticals used in clinical medicine. In our course to learn pharmacology we use a format that integrates the actions of drugs from the level of an individual molecular target to the level of the human patient. The primary objective is to provide future physicians with a strong knowledge base of fundamental aspects of pharmacology and therapeutics that will: 1) permit them to optimally benefit from the clinical years of instruction; and 2) allow them to continue building proficiency in pharmacology throughout their careers. This is achieved by stressing basic principles of drug action, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and toxicity.
Also, the pharmacology of a particular physiologic or biochemical system is presented, such as the inflammation cascade and the Immune System. Subsections present the pharmacology of a particular aspect of that system, such as vascular tone or eicosanoids. Each subsection presents a clinical vignette illustrating the relevance of the system under consideration; then discusses the biochemistry, physiology, and pathophysiology of the system; and finally presents the drugs and drug classes that activate or inhibit the system by interacting with specific molecular and cellular targets. In this scheme, the therapeutic and adverse actions of drugs are understood in the framework of the drug's mechanism of action. Contemporary directions in molecular and human pharmacology are introduced in subsection on modern methods of drug discovery, drug delivery and pharmacogenomics.
Pharmacology and Therapeutics I (273) Course offers the general aspects of pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacology of autonomic nervous system, general principles of pharmacology of Immune system, and principles of antineoplastic therapy. The following sections by systems are included in this first course: Cardiovascular pharmacology, Hematologic pharmacology, and pharmacology of respiratory system.
The systems included in Pharmacology and Therapeutics Course II (275) are: Gastrointestinal, Endocrine & Reproductive, Dermatology Pharmacology of Inflammation, Pharmacology of eye, and Central Nervous system pharmacology. Special Topics of Toxicology, Pharmacogenomics, Protein Based Therapies, Drug delivery modalities, Botanic medications and Nutritional Supplements, Special Aspects of Perinatal, Pediatric and Geriatric Pharmacology, are also included.
Lectures are complemented with clinical case discussions, integration activities such as Academic Competence Enhancement activities (ACE) and community services.
This course is a one year course designed to study the macroscopic, microscopic, molecular and functional abnormalities of tissue and organ diseases by systems. Diseases are discussed integrating pathological processes with histopathology, microbiology, pharmacology and therapeutics, and clinical diagnosis approach. Students are taught by lectures, guided laboratory practice, small group discussions, self directed studies, clinical correlations, standardized and computer designed patients. Integrated activities such as Academic Competence Enhancement (ACE) and community service are included. Also, students have the opportunity to visit and observe autopsies atthe Forensic Science Institute of Puerto Rico during the second semester.
Patho-physiology I (213) and II (214) courses are aligned with Microbiology, Clinical Diagnosis, and Pharmacology and Therapeutics to assist students with integration of functional units and systems.
The Patho-physiology I course offers an introductory section covering all aspects of normal cell function including cell death. In addition, topics in immunology, genetics, inflammation, cancer biology, fluids and electrolytes as well as acid/base balance are reviewed. Once the introductory section is completed the course is then divided in systems. The systems emphasized during this course are: Cardio-Vascular System, Hematology/Oncology, Head & Neck with Respiratory System, Male & Female Genital-Urinary Tract System.
The systems emphasized in the Patho-physiology II course are Gastro-Intestinal System, Endocrine & Reproductive Endocrinology System, Dermatology & Muscular-Skeletal System with Bone & Joints Diseases, Eye & Central Nervous System.
All systems include a Pediatric and Geriatric approach to related diseases.
The course uses an organ system approach in a curriculum where both biomedical science and clinical medicine are integrated throughout the pre-clinical program. These courses are aligned with Pathophysiology, Clinical Diagnosis, and Pharmacology & Therapeutics; which together, runs for the full academic year.Emphasis was placed on etiology, epidemiology, clinical manifestations, host response, diagnosis and control.One advantage of this approach is that students begin developing clinical reasoning skills based on clinical signs and symptoms, and other epidemiological clues. Another advantage is that organisms that cause disease in multiple organ systems are covered in multiple modules, reinforcing the learned concept.Lectures are complemented with laboratory exercises, case discussions, integration activities such as Academic Competence Enhancement activities (ACE) and community services.
The Medical Microbiology 260 course begins with an introductory module. Here, basic aspects of Microbiology are presented; including an overview of bacteriology, virology, mycology, parasitology, pathogenesis, bacterial genetics, vaccines and anti-microbial immunity.Then, the Medical Microbiology I course continues with the following system modules: Cardio-Vascular, Hematology/Oncology, Head & Neck with Respiratory System and Genital-Urinary Tract System.
The Medical Microbiology 261 course is the continuation of the Micro 260 course taught in the 1st Semester.The system modules included in the Medical Microbiology II course are: Gastro-Intestinal System, Dermatology & Musculo-Skeletal System incluiding Bone & Joints diseases, Eye and Central Nervous System.Also, a special module in which topics such as: biological agents of warfare and terrorism, mutisystemic zoonosis and vector-borne infections are also covered.
The course ends with the NBME Subject examination.
These course is designed to introduce the second year medical student to the clinical sciences, with the goals of achieving proficiency in clinical skills and the ability to apply basic science information to solving problems and making decisions in clinical medicine.
The didactic portion of the course is designed to teach the student basic concepts pertaining to human disease covering an introduction to the clinical disciplines. Material is organized and presented by organ systems.The systems emphasized in the Clinical Diagnosis I course are: Cardio-Vascular System, Hematology/Oncology, Head & Neck with Respiratory System, Male & Female Genital-Urinary Tract System. The systems emphasized in the Clinical Diagnosis II course are: Gastro-Intestinal System, Endocrine & Reproductive Endocrinology System, Dermatology & Musculo-Skeletal System with Bone & Joints Diseases, Eye & Central Nervous System.
The teaching of clinical science related to each system is aligned with the teaching of the Pathophysiology, Pharmacology and therapeutics, Microbiology to promote the integration of concepts related to each system.
Students are taught by lectures, small group discussions, clinical correlations, standardized and computer designed patients, preceptorships, workshops, integration activities such as Academic Competence Enhancement (ACE’s) and community service.
The practical portion of the course emphasizes practical aspects of being a physician. The sessions are designed to teach students history taking, physical examination, interpretation of findings, skills and knowledge required to pursue diagnostic investigations.
There is an emphasis on “abnormal” findings. Students will learn to interpret the meaning of these examinations, and to organize and utilize the information obtained from their data-gathering activities for the diagnosis and treatment of human.