1. Reading constructively.


Home Page The Stockport DRCOG Package List of suitable texts



You need to cement a load of facts into your head.

How best to make stuff stick?

I like the use of cards. 

With each topic you read, extract the key features and formulate questions on the front of the card, with the answers on the back. 

The aim is to ensure that your reading is purposeful and focused. 

The cards are an ideal means of revising.

Take a handful to work each day and go through them. 

For example, take polyhydramnios.

"Ten Teachers" devotes two pages to the subject. 

In the first couple of paragraphs, it records that polyhydramnios is:

    an excessive amount of liquor,

    probably in excess of 2000 ml.,

    not usually detected before thirty weeks,

    except for the rare acute variety due to twin- twin transfusion,

    is more common in multiparae,

    may have fetal or maternal causes,

    though often no cause is found. 

It then lists the fetal causes:

    multiple pregnancy,


    oesophageal or duodenal atresia,

    spina bifida,

    and fetal hydrops.

It mentions the rare chorioangioma of the placenta. 

Maternal causes are restricted to diabetes, particularly if poorly controlled.


You could just read this and hope that it sticks, but far better to have cards. 

Questions on the front might be:

    volume needed for diagnosis,

    aetiology of the acute form,

    relationship to parity,

    usual gestation at diagnosis

A card might be devoted to fetal causes and another to "maternal and other" non-fetal causes.  

The back should then have the appropriate answers. 

It will take you twice as long to do the reading as you need to sift the information and then form it into questions.

But it will force you to read well.  

An MCQ might be along the lines of (the exam would only give you a - e):



a.       is more common in primigravidae.

b.       is commonly diagnosed under thirty weeks.

c.       is associated with fetal urinary tract obstruction.

d.       is associated with fetal alimentary tract obstruction.

e.       has an identifiable cause in >90% of cases.

f.        is associated with liquor volumes > 500 ml.

g.       is associated with poorly controlled maternal diabetes.

h.       is associated with Rhesus iso-immunisation.


Extract the information onto cards and you should be able to deal with these questions with panache.  


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