Interview with Dr. Jagadeesh Menon – 23rd rank holder – PGIMER PG entrance May 2011

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  • Congratulations on securing a top rank in PGIMER PG entrance May 2011! What is the secret of your success?
    • Thank you very much. Read theory from Harrison, Robbins and Ganong. And surely, with the support of my parents, dear ones and above all, the Almighty.
  • What was your study strategy?
    • I mainly read theory from Harrison, Robbins, Nelson (systems) and Ganong and did the corresponding mcq’s.
  • When did you seriously start preparing for this exam?
    • Mainly after my internship.
  • In your opinion, how much time does a student require for preparing for this exam?
    • I think, may be 1.5 to 2 years for the theory basics and then going through the mcq’s. After internship, it depends.
  • How many hours did you study each day?
    • During my 2nd and final year, about 4 to 5 hours per day, not much during internship, after that about 3 to 4 hours a day.
  • Did you have a timetable for preparation? Were you able to stick to it?
    • No, I did not have any timetable.
  • Were you able to prepare well during the internship period?
    • No, I felt a bit difficult to read during internship except during some free postings.
  • Did you attend any coaching? Was it useful?
    • Yes, the alumni coaching classes of Calicut Medical College. It was really helpful.
  • What were the subjects you focused upon?
    • Mainly Hematology, Oncology, Ophtalmology, Radiodiagnosis, Pharmacology, Anesthesia and PSM
  • What books did you read for theory?
    • Anatomy – Chaurasia, K L moore
    • Physiology – Ganong and its mcq’s
    • Biochemistry – Harper
    • Pathology – Robbins
    • Microbiology – Ananthanarayan
    • Pharmacology – KDT, Katzung
    • Forensic medicine – Pillay
    • Ophthalmology – Parsons
    • ENT – Dhingra
    • Community medicine – Park
    • Medicine – Harrison
    • Surgery – Bailey and Sabiston
    • Obgyn – Shiela B, Jeffcot
    • Peadiatrics – O P Ghai, Nelson (systems)
    • Anesthesia – Ajay Yadav
    • Psychiatry – Niraj Ahuja and Pre-test
    • Radiology – Sumer K Sethi
  • Is there anything specific to keep in mind while preparing for PGIMER? (when compared to AIIMS, AIPGMEE and other state exams) – regarding books for preparation, topics to focus on etc…
    • Yes. Mainly because it’s a multiple response examination. The probability of choices becoming right is more. So each of the 250×5=1250 choices are to be assessed and so, I think, time is the limiting factor. For each question, on an average, 2/3 of 5 options would be right. A guide by manoj chaudhari is helpful in understanding the pattern of examination. Some important topics stressed are: Nerves of upper and lower limbs + visceral supply, Cardiac dynamics, Genetics and biotechnology(lippincot), Antibiotics and chemotherapy (katzung), Posterior segment of the eye, Anatomy of ear, nose and throat, Metabolic disorders, Accidents and trauma care, Gynecological malingnancies and contraception, Growth and development, Hematology and Oncology(Robbins and Harrison), Anesthetic equipments, Radiation physics, Tuberculosis
  • What was your plan for the week before the exam?
    • After going through the basics before, I did the previous years question papers from Manoj Chaudhari during the final week.
  • What was your strategy for taking the exam?
    • Exam was of 3 hrs duration with 250 questions. I attempted each question, both easy and difficult ones in the same order since time was limited for a review. Some tricky ones I left for the 2nd round for which about 10 min was left.
  • How many questions did you attempt?
    • 247 questions and about 600 options.
  • How many do you think you got correct?
    • Since answer key and especially marks are not published, its difficult to predict.
  • What is your advice to future aspirants?
    • I don’t know whether my strategies are suitable for all since each of us would be having different methods of preparation. But 4 books will help us all: Harrison, Robbins, Nelson(systems) and Ganong. Retrospectively thinking I feel that the ideal time to start preparing is from 3rd semester onwards with Robbins PBD and to start reading Harrison from 6th semester onwards and then doing the mcq’s.
  • That brings us to the conclusion of the interview. Best of luck for your future endeavours!
    • Thank you very much

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