The Secret Origins of Atropos

The hotly anticipated third installment of our SECRET ORIGINS series …

Come meet the members of the Medical VS class in these exciting features. Learn their stories, their medical training, their combat skills AND find out how each one met their unfortunate demise.


Atropos was born in 154 AD in a small Germanic village on the banks of the Elbe in the Kingdom of the Marcomanni. Her father pledged her to a tribal leader as part of a debt repayment while her mother was still pregnant with her. As such, she was named Gisila at birth. Throughout her infancy she was traded amongst various tribal leaders until she ended up in the household of Ballomar, the Marcomannic King. She was a precocious child and he greatly favoured her, so much so that she was given the peculiar honour of a rudimentary education. At the age of 10 she learned to read and write Latin and became quite useful during the Germanic negotiations with the Roman military governor Marcus Iallius Bassus. Much to Ballomar’s dismay, she was given to the Romans in 167 AD as part of a truce agreement. As the Marcomannic wars exploded she was shipped to Aquileia and imprisoned briefly as her foster father Ballomar’s army besieged the city. Continue reading “The Secret Origins of Atropos”

Rh Factor VS RhD Factor

Bottom Line:

They are the same thing! D is the most common antigen in the Rh blood group system so people keep things simple by just saying “Rh” instead of RhD. Note that RhD can also be denoted as RhO (sometimes using a subscript letter O or number 0). So Rh, RhD, RhO, RhoD, RhO or Rh0 can all refer to the D antigen of the Rh blood group system.

Memory Aids:

When in doubt, it’s the Rh D antigen. Continue reading “Rh Factor VS RhD Factor”

Exudate VS Transudate

Bottom Line:

Fluid that collects in extracellular, extravascular spaces can be either exudative or transudative. Exudative fluid arises from inflammatory processes that make vessel walls more permeable to both fluid and proteins which allow them to exit the vessels and collect in the extravascular spaces. Transudative fluid exits the vessels due to a pressure differential between the intra and extravascular space (either hydrostatic or oncotic), but typically does not contain proteins since they are too large to squeeze out of the vessels. A fluid sample can be tested according to Light’s criteria to determine if it is exudative or transudative.

Memory Aids:

Exudates are from Enflammation (inflammation)

Light’s criteria – protein 5, LDH 6

(fluid protein:serum protein >0.5, fluid LDH:serum LDH>0.6) Continue reading “Exudate VS Transudate”


Bottom Line:

ADLs (activities of daily living) are the basic necessary daily self-care tasks people are required to perform such as bathing, dressing, toileting, grooming, and self-feeding. They are sometimes called Basic Activities of Daily Living (BADLs) to differentiate them from IADLs (instrumental activities of daily living) which are slightly more complex tasks that people are required to perform in order to live independently in society. These include shopping, banking, housework, and cooking among others.

Memory Aids:


D – dressing

E – eating (specifically feeding oneself, but not necessarily cooking or chewing or swallowing)

A – ambulation (walking and transferring)

T – toileting (including cleaning oneself afterwards)

H – hygiene (showering, grooming, combing/styling hair)


S – shopping

H – housekeeping

A – accounting (including banking, management of finances)

F – food preparation

T – telephone use (or another communication device) and transportation (driving or using the bus or calling a taxi) Continue reading “ADLs VS IADLs”