As a medical student it keeps happening. Whatever subject we are studying, whatever new word or disease I decide to Wikipedia, it shows up in my every day life. Or something like that. I think there is a theory or word to describe this phenomenon but my search of the exact title of this definition seems lacking. Synchronicity? Maybe but it is not as magical or dispersed as that. Confirmation bias, selective recall? Perhaps, but I do not really refute or notice a bias AGAINST anything else, just a heightened awareness of the thing, theory, idea, subject, etc. And I guess that is all that it is, a coincidence though I don't attribute any meaning to it. But I would like to know what to properly call it. If you know, please do comment and enlighten me.
Okay, let me illustrate. Last week we were studying psychiatric disorders and health care systems including policies in different countries. What do I read in the New York Times but this piece: The Americanization of Mental Illness.
I remember last term during my super short two week parasit course I came across this lovely picture of vericose veins caused by Schistosomiasis.
Another example. During the last two weeks of immunology I read a blog and stumbled across a newish cytokine: IL-33 and then found this in my inbox: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/444383_3.
Of note, I have not come across any other immuno or parasitology links, info, etc. SINCE I finished those classes, but maybe I just unconsciously stopped looking for them? Anyhow, this week we are studying biostatistics so I guess my next project is to calculate the p value for all of these occurrences being random chance versus statistically significant. So, if I read the NYT everyday and scan an average of 28 articles and read 50 blog entries a week and I am studying 4 given medical subjects at any one time.... (Study design and results will be forthcoming.)