Exchange report - incoming students
Dublin Dental University Hospital (DDUH).
Home university: Christian Medical College, Vellore
Study programme: Medicine
Exchange programme: Linnaeus-Palme
Semester: Spring semester 2013/2014
Name: Ira Gautam
Email address:

Arrival and registration


The warmth of the people and the country was evident the moment i alighted at Arlanda. The efforts taken by the university were overwhelming. I am secially thankful to Michaela who received us at the airport with our keys . we had very clear instructions as to directions and transport. I had been  told about this wonder called the SLtransport card and I was soon to discover its benefits as I explored and re explored the city by bus tram boat metro and what not. The transition from 42 degress to 2 degress was not easy, but then when one is as awestruck as i was, it really did not matter.

Main Square, Trinity College.



Emmylundsvagen 1 or Pax as we call it was to be or home for the next three months and i couldn’t have asked for better. I was informed of the options four months before our arrival which gave us ample time to apply. Following the advice of our seniors, I opted for Pax.for all the confort and facilities it provided it was an ideal accommodation well suited to its cost. It was a great means of learning skills of independent living. I being someone who had never cooked before, the kitchen in itself was a blessing, and sharing it with a bunch of enthusiastic corridor mates was amazing. Kitchen duty was a wordwe dreaded every month but nevertheless emerged proud homemakers at the end.

Morgon i St Stephens Green, min skolväg.

Leisure time and social activities


It is wonderful to see people in Europe making the best use of their leisure time, and i decided to absorb as much of Europe as i can in mine. Stockholm is a beautiful city and theriverside was what i enjoyed the most. Just taking an aimless bus ride on bus number three was a days worth of sightseeing. I loved Slussen and Gamla Stan and took every opportunity i could to walk along the water. The extremely late sunset added to the joy of exploring. We got to know people from france, Italy, spain, chile , Switzerland, Lithuania,USA, new Zealand, Greece, germany, and of course, from India too. I love travelling and globe trotting i enjoyed at its best when i visited numerous coutries- France, Lithuania, Italy, Germany, Amsterdam, Belgium, Spain and saw another aspect of Sweden-Gotland. Travels independently taught us survival startegies, how to booktickets, hotels, and how to manage currency. We are still in touch with our Pax friends and plan to do so in future too. The land and nature of every European country has a lot to offer.

Antrimkusten på Nordirland.



To summarise the best three months of my life  into  a report is unthinkable. However, this is gratitude of the university,  Sweden and the wonderful people of Europe.

Opting to go on exchange was an easy choice to make , simply because of the sheer range of experiences it provides. Prospects of learning from this opportunity were endless. On an academic level, wanted  to acquaint myself with approach to a patient in terms of humanity, dedication and skill. I also wanted to learn from my observation of  facilities, dedicated faculty, and novel teaching methods.On a personal level wanted  to experience what it took  to represent the country . It was a test of my success at an independent  living, my ability to imbibe their medical knowledge, and hone clinical skills. Moreover, it would serve as an assessment of my adaptability in an alien environment.Finally on a social level, I hoped to discover a new campus life, and attitude of students , while hoping to pick up tid bits of language, culture and cuisine .The experience of foreign travel was novel in itself.I was amazed at how detailed and prompt all information given to me was. The acceptance letter and brochure charted out every academic and leisure detail very lucidly.we owe a lot to Mrs Magdalena, how immediately put us at ease and was a great support right till the day we left.

Wicklow Mountains. Var åker du i vår?

Courses during the exchange period

DVKX01 : Medical Development in Europe
Our second course was the most innovative way of learning i have seen. It s called medical development in Europe. We were taken to Italy and Lithuania to observe their medical practices in order to compare, contrast and absorb the best they had to offer. I had never been on a cruise before and the one to Latvia and then to Lithuania was unforgettable. Dr. Hans, Dr. Karin , Dr. Marie , Dr. Michael and Dr. Brigitta were most enthusiastic. We learnt through experiences, the good and the not so good. We interacted with people from over ten nationalities on this course. We were assessed in the form of a super case presentation. We ended the course on very positive note.
ELA005 : Internal Medicine 1
Our last course was at Sodersjukhuset, a hospital with one of the most amazing views of Sweden. Internal medicine was taken care of by our coordinator Karin and Dr brigitta Goine. We were posted in infections ward, acute care, neuro ward and gastro. Here too i was allowed to observe lot of procedures-lumbar punctures, gastoscopies, eeg, ABG s and a whole lot more. We were assessed based on a case report which we found interesting. I would like to thank all those who went out of their way to take timeout and teach us how things work there, and we learnt a lot from everyone, starting from the senior consultants to the junior doctors and specially the nurses.
LÄK001 : Cardiology
I opted for two clinical rotations and one clinical course. My first course was cardiology, and i was awed by the range of interventions i saw. We were allowed to witness angiographies, percutaneous interventions, ablations(radiofrequency/alcohol/cryo), cardioversions, cardiac biopsies, pace maker implantations, ECMO s, biventricular device implantation and TAVI to name a few. Dr. Nondita Sarkar was great in coordinating everything. We met two great French girls Jeanne and Ninon who were amazing company. We got to explore two aspects of karolinska- Solna and Huddinge, both of which were great to be at. I would also like to thank all the staff to took special efforts for us to conduct rounds in English just so that we knew what was going on.



These three months were a dream come true. Life was good with very little to worry about. We learned a lot and travels were enriching. The people were a joy to be with. More over, we were overwhelmed by the hospitality of the nation. We return determined to make our college atmosphere as welcoming as possible for those who make our country their home for the time they are here. We hope to be back someday and catch up with all those who left such a great impact on us.

Staty i Belfast på Nordirland.

Language and Culture


Coming from acountry with innumerable languages,  Swedish was, well, just another language,interesting,nevertheless.It is also amazing tohear the flawless English most Swedes speak,irrespective of generation. Hence general communication was awalk in the park, specially when compared to a few of the other countries we visited during our travels. At the wards, Swedish was a bit of a challenge, and google translate was our best friend as we sat and translated patient charts to understand their condition. We did not avail of the language course,but for all those who have a knack for languages, do go for it.

St Patricks Day.

Studies in general


Studies in the West are generally and conspicuously different from the East, specially India were basic academic attitude is competition based.I loved the calm, unstressed environment in which studies worked at Karolinska. The concept of the pass and fail assessment was an interesting and encouraging concept. The block pattern of education, comprising three months of theory and three months of practicals however didn’t come across as something i would like to opt for , owing to its potential to get tedious in the long run. The library amazed me and it was great to see how confortable they make the study environment. More over,it was extremely well equipped. We in India in most parts still rely on intense theoretical learningas compared to the application based learning practiced in most parts of Europe. Both have their pros and cons and somewhere in the middle exists the ideal. Its great to see these two cultures mixing and absorbing the best of both.