Discovering colchicine for familial Mediterranean fever

Dining with colleagues in the cafeteria of the Massachusetts General Hospital, Dr. Stephen Goldfinger expressed his frustration about the strange illness of a patient he had recently seen. She had attacks of fever and abdominal pain that seemed to come out of nowhere.  Her attacks were brief, lasting 1-3 days, but were so severe that she became bed-ridden during these episodes.  Although the woman was otherwise healthy, a severe depression ensued from the unpredictable, debilitating illness that plagued her life every few weeks.

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Getting students to AskUp!

Screen Shot 2015-04-06 at 7.31.06 PMAskUp is a free, open-source, high-intensity learning application that I created with a group of Harvard programmers.  This application allows learners to create question and answer sets after any educational event (a lecture, an article, a patient encounter, a video, etc).  Questions can then be shared with other learners so that they, too, can learn from this experience.  Practice testing (creating your own question and answer or taking practice tests) is one of the most effective learning strategies available.

This poster includes the results of a pilot study of using AskUp in a medical school class.  The poster was presented at Boston Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education Day.