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FCPS Part 1 Pathology Preparation Guide

By Dr. Sharif Bashir

It wasn't an easy process as the guidelines available for pathology candidates is pretty limited. Before going into study details, must mention one thing: This exam is purely luck based and all you can do is pray.


Time period: 2-3 months max.
Start off by doing BRS for physio and pathology. One quick read and then move on to First Aid for everything (including anatomy, physio, biochem, general pharma, micro and special pathology); General Patho from BRS;  High Yield for Embryo (selected chaps only) and Histo from Amir Saleem (Epithelias and glands very imp). For Heamatology, I did Pathoma too with lectures. But primary book is still FA. No need of Goljan or any other book. Just do FA well.
Once on FA, start doing Rabia Ali MCQs unit wise.  Don't panic if you can't answer most of them correctly. It's normal in the first read. Use a couple of good erratas to mark the correct answer on the book.
After going through FA the first time, start it again with a second go of Rabia Ali.
After that leave FA for the topics that you find difficult and start asim shoaib with tanveer notes. In the last two to three weeks, it should only be about mcqs especially SK Golden Files (fb discussion), Rabia Ali and Asim Shoaib.

-Do the important files/images in this fb group and use search bar for confusing mcqs but don't confuse yourself in the discussions of different questions. They never help. Trust me. Do your own research.
-Most of the profiles that are very 'active' in this group are fake. So don't make them your ideals or take their word for everything. There is no such thing as 'CPSP key'. No one knows the CPSP key.


-Time is more than enough. You can easily complete the paper.
-Paper 1 is a very very vague paper but many questions are repeated from SK pearls or Tanveer notes. So do either of them or both of them; upto you.
-Paper 2: It's a very balanced paper. Questions are NOT out of the world type. Main topics that should be strong are: Heamatology, Acid Base and Microbiology/Parasitology. Atleast 60% of the paper 2 is from these three topic areas. All three of them are written in ample detail in FA. Pathoma videos for heamatology if you want to develop good concept.

Lastly and most importantly, this is just another post-graduation exam. You are already a doctor. You have already proven yourself. Passing rate in pathology is very low as overall number of candidates appearing in pathology is less. Letting you know not to scare you but just to give you an idea that it's okay if you are unable pass part 1 in Pathology in the first attempt.
If you can't make it the first time, don't lose hope or underestimate yourself. It's bound to happen one day. Just hang in there and keep praying.
Didn't clear it the first time in Sep 2017 when I actually studied for 3 months straight. But I did clear it this time with very little prep as had some family commitments.
So keep it easy, keep it real and hope for the best. :)

P.S If you have any query, feel free to ask me. More than happy to help.


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