No Dr Shock is not going into herbal remedies nor acupuncture or any other expensive crap. Papayas are used to introduce Year 3 medical students to uterine anatomy, endometrial biopsies, intrauterine contraception, and uterine aspiration. They sure learn a lot more than we did in the “Old Days”.
During the second week of the Year 3 obstretics and gynaecological clerkship students participate in a “Papaya Workshop”. The Gynaecologists pokes holes in the stem ends to mimic the cervix. On these papayas the students practice intrauterine contraception (IUC) placement with two different IUC’s. They learn to dilate and aspirate and curette their papayas, mimicking the case of a women with a missed abortion.
During 1 year the students were surveyed before and after the workshop and at the end of the rotation. 90% of those asked rated the workshop as highly valuable. Before the workshop a score of 75% correct answers was achieved by 48% of the students, after the workshop this had increased to 98% and it remained fairly steady to the end of the rotation (91%).
The papaya workshop is a fun, inexpensive and easily replicable model for teaching intrauterine procedures.
I hope that the University of California San Francisco, San Francisco General Hospital will keep including this workshop in the ob-gyn clerkship and may they come up with more fun workshops with educational profits.
Steinauer J, Preskill F, Robertson P.
Med Educ. 2007 Sep 20; [Epub ahead of print]
Training medical students in intrauterine procedures using papayas.