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Didactic Course Descriptions

Summer

MPAS 5441–PA Gross Anatomy
Study of basic gross and functional anatomy in an organ-system approach.  Course covers cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, nervous, musculoskeletal, special senses, lymphatic, endocrine and integument systems by lecture, laboratory and independent learning activities. The laboratory utilizes anatomical models, histology slides, prosected cadavers, radiographic images, and virtual anatomy software.

MPAS 5342–Clinical Physiology
Study of the physiological function of the cell and organ systems with introduction to pathophysiology of disease in the systems.  Systems include cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, nervous, musculoskeletal, special senses, lymphatic, endocrine and integument. Course topics will correlate with the topics presented in PA Gross Anatomy.

MPAS 5591–Physical Assessment
An introduction to clinical medicine.  Course includes eliciting a medical history; performing physical examination; reviewing anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology of common diseases; and differentiating between normal and abnormal physical exam findings. A physical examination skills laboratory will be held weekly to permit students to practice history and physical exam techniques.  Students will also experience patient encounters throughout the semester in which they will elicit a medical history from patients in an inpatient or outpatient setting and then appropriately document and orally present the patient findings.

MPAS 5351–Clinical Pharmacology
Study of the physiologic and biochemical aspects of the major classes of pharmacological agents. Brief overview of pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic principles of pharmacology.  Major concepts involve drug classification, mechanism of action, absorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination, and dose-response relationships of the different drug classes. Major drug interactions and adverse effects of specific classes will be covered.

MPAS 5131–Patient Communication I
Course emphasizes interviewing techniques and interpersonal communication skills across the life span with emphasis on cultural diversity issues. Standardized patients will be utilized to enhance student interviewing skills.

MPAS 5121–Clinical Reasoning I
Introduction to critical thinking and application of medical knowledge and skills in a case-based small group setting. Emphasis this semester will be on eliciting appropriate medical histories, determining appropriate physical examination techniques to perform, and formulating a differential diagnosis. Cases will correlate with topics covered in the Physical Assessment course.

MPAS 5111–Professional Issues I
Application-based introduction to concepts of physician assistant profession.  Topics to include history of physician assistant profession, physician assistant organizations, accreditation, the health care team, documentation, oral presentations, professionalism, and ethical issues.

Fall

MPAS 5892–Principles of Medicine I
Foundational principles of clinical medicine covered in a discipline based approach.  Each module will review anatomy and physiology of specific systems.  Instruction will cover pathophysiology, etiology, incidence, signs and symptoms, differential diagnosis, diagnostic techniques, diagnosis, prognosis, and management of specific common diseases.  This course will include a brief overview of the microbiological and immunological aspects of medicine. Topics will include normal flora, organism classification and transmission, and pathogenesis of infection of microbial pathogens, cell-mediated and humeral immunity, hypersensitivity reactions, and immune-mediated diseases.  A weekly clinical procedural laboratory will correlate with the medical topic being covered in the lectures.  Students will experience clinical patient encounters in outpatient or inpatient settings several times during the semester and then appropriately document and orally present the patient findings.

MPAS 5361–Diagnostic Assessment I
Study of ordering and interpreting laboratory, imaging and diagnostic tests utilized in current medical practice. Course includes indications, contraindications, precautions, complications, techniques, cost-effectiveness, patient preparation, and ordering and interpretation of specific labs and tests.  Course will correlate with the topics being addressed in Principles of Medicine I course.

MPAS 5252–Pharmacotherapy I
Addresses the pharmacotherapeutic principles of specific medications utilized in disease management.  Course includes drug identification, indications, contraindications, adverse effects, drug interactions, cost, routes of administration, therapeutic monitoring, patient education and pertinent mechanism of action of specific drugs.  Course topics will correlate with topics being presented in Principles of Medicine I course.

MPAS 5371–Behavioral Medicine
Study of psychological and behavioral medical conditions.  Course addresses the signs and symptoms, etiology, diagnosis, differential diagnosis, and treatment of behavioral disorders. Also includes conducting a psychiatric interview, classifying disorders, substance abuse, eating disorders, sleep disorders, abuse and neglect, death and dying, childhood disorders, psychological testing, psychological therapy, and pharmacological agents.

MPAS 5281–Introduction to Evidence Based Medicine
Introduction to utilizing the best available evidence in current medicine in addition to clinical experience to more effectively manage patients.  Topics will include a brief overview of clinical epidemiology, research design, biostatistics, formulating a clinical question, database searching, and interpretation of medical literature.

MPAS 5132–Patient Communication II
Course builds on concepts covered in Patient Communication I with emphasis on interviewing techniques and interpersonal communication skills across the life span and emphasis on cultural diversity issues. Standardized patients will be utilized to enhance student interviewing skills.

MPAS 5122–Clinical Reasoning II
Continuation of the utilization of critical thinking skills and application of medical knowledge through small-group case discussions.  Focus will shift from medical history taking and physical examination to placing more emphasis on laboratory and diagnostic test ordering/interpretation and patient management.  Cases will correlate with topics covered in the Principles of Medicine I course.

MPAS 5112–Professional Issues II
Continuation of professional issues in physician assistant profession.  Topics include documentation, safety, patient education, disease prevention, cultural issues, ethical issues and specific health care settings.

Spring

MPAS 5893–Principles of Medicine II
Foundational principles of clinical medicine covered in a discipline-based approach.  Each module will review anatomy and physiology of specific systems.  Instruction will cover pathophysiology, etiology, incidence, signs and symptoms, differential diagnosis, diagnostic techniques, diagnosis, prognosis, and management of specific diseases.  A weekly procedural laboratory will correlate with the discipline topic being covered in the lectures.  Students will experience clinical patient encounters in outpatient or inpatient settings several times during the semester and then appropriately document and orally present the patient findings.

MPAS 5362–Diagnostic Assessment II
Study of ordering and interpreting laboratory, imaging and diagnostic tests utilized in current medical practice. Course includes indications, contraindications, precautions, complications, techniques, cost-effectiveness, patient preparation, and ordering and interpretation of specific labs and tests.  Course will correlate to the topics being addressed in Principles of Medicine II course.

MPAS 5253–Pharmacotherapy II
Addresses the pharmacotherapeutic principles of specific medications utilized in disease management.  Course includes drug identification, indications, contraindications, adverse effects, drug interactions, cost, routes of administration, therapeutic monitoring, patient education, and pertinent mechanism of action of specific drugs.  Course topics will correlate with topics being presented in Principles of Medicine II course.

MPAS 5372–Emergency Medicine
Presentation, diagnosis, and management of trauma and acute care patients who present to the emergency department.  Topics involve multiple trauma, shock, wound management, environmental injuries, toxicology, orthopedic injuries, acute general medical and surgical diseases, pain control, emergency procedures, bioterrorism, and disaster medicine. Course also covers emergent conditions in cardiology, respiratory, pediatrics, gynecology, obstetrics, endocrinology, and hematology and oncology.

MPAS 5282–Foundations of Evidence Based Medicine
Study of utilizing the best available evidence in current medicine in addition to clinical experience to more effectively manage patients.  Course builds on the foundation established in first EBM course and utilizes a journal club approach to emphasize the application of EBM principles.

MPAS 5123–Clinical Reasoning III
Continuation of the utilization of critical thinking skills and application of medical knowledge through weekly small-group case discussions.  Emphasis on laboratory and diagnostic test ordering/ interpretation and patient management.  Cases will correlate to topics being covered in the Principles of Medicine II course.

MPAS 5144–Medical Genetics
Introduction to medical genetics.  Topics include rules of inheritance, human pedigrees, chromosomal abnormalities, genetic disease, genetic screening and counseling, and genetic pharmacotherapy.

Summer

MPAS 5113–Professional Issues III
Continuation of professional issues in physician assistant profession.  Topics include documentation, health care systems and policy, patient education, cultural issues, ethical issues and specific health care settings.

MPAS 5394–Principles of Medicine III
An advanced medicine course that emphasizes pediatric, geriatric and rehabilitative medicine.  Pediatric and geriatric modules emphasize etiology, signs and symptoms, differential diagnosis, diagnosis, prognosis, and management of medical conditions specific for the life-span.  The rehabilitative module involves an overview of rehabilitative medicine, assistive devices, gait assessment, and stroke and cardiac rehabilitation.  Laboratory includes infant evaluation, child evaluation, geriatric evaluation, functional assessment, and the use of assistive devices.

MPAS 5273–Surgical Medicine
Course involves the evaluation, diagnosis, and management of the surgical patient. The course addresses pre and post-op management, common surgical procedures and complications, indications and contraindications, surgical techniques and instruments, sterile technique, operating room protocol, anesthesia, and an introduction to the surgical subspecialties.

MPAS 5233–Medical Ethics
Introduction to ethical issues that occur in clinical medicine.  Topics include informed consent, confidentiality, nonmaleficence and beneficence, patient decision-making capacity, futile intervention, advance directives, end-of-life issues, assisted suicide, abortion, human research, and health care provider issues.  Special topics in surgery, pediatrics and women’s health are also covered.

MPAS 5114–Professional Issues IV
Continuation of professional issues in physician assistant profession.  Topics include practice and prescriptive laws, reimbursement, malpractice, certification and licensure, health care resources, HIPAA guidelines, and specific health care settings.

MPAS 5143–Clinical Nutrition
Study of the nutritional care of the primary care patient with topics including geriatric, pediatric, diabetic, renal and cardiac patients and pregnant and lactating patients.  Course also covers vitamin and mineral deficiencies, proper dieting, nutritional supplements, herbal supplements, nutritional medical disorders, enteral and parenteral nutrition, and patient nutritional assessment.