Many sets of notes are available for anaesthesia examinations – don’t try to read them all! Everyone has a different approach to learning and a different approach to making notes. You are far better off finding one set that works for you and sticking to it. The nature of exams is such that the answer you write on the big day will never be as good as the model answer you read or practice at home. You want as many good answers as possible – remember that “better is the enemy of good” (Voltaire).
I am in the process of reviewing and uploading these – more will be here in future. As with any notes you come across, don’t blindly trust any of these. The recommended texts hold the definitive answers (as far as exams are concerned) and should always be consulted when uncertain. It goes without saying that notes should not be used for making clinical decisions.
The following are various collections of notes relevant to the primary examination. The exam focuses on physiology, pharmacology, equipment and measurement, with some content covering anatomy, statistics and clinical management. There is significant overlap with the FRCA primary exam and other analogous international exams.
- Ketamine Nightmares
- Propofol Dreams
- Primary Examination SAQs – Amanda Diaz
- Notes For ANZCA Primary Exam – Adam Hollingworth
- CICM / ANZCA Examination Notes – Mark Finnis
- James Mitchell’s Anaesthetics Notes
- Primary Examination – Paul Martin
- anaesthetics primary – Intensive Care Network
- ICU Primary Prep
The following resources are specifically for diagrams relevant to the primary examination. Diagrams are occasionally useful for the written paper, however, their true importance is in the viva. Be sure to be familiar with all of these diagrams – you should be able to draw them (roughly) with labelled axes and know key points on the curves.
- Graph Session 2015
- Graphs and stuff you need to be able to draw (List)
- Graphs and stuff you need to be able to draw (Slides)
An excellent site for primary examination study is Primary LO of the Day, which consists of regular posts by primary examiners based directly on the curriculum. Aside from being good practice on relevant topics, there has been a trend of exam questions covering content featured heavily on the site. As it’s intended as a prompt for study rather than a Q&A bank, answers aren’t posted. The following are collections of past questions from the site with answers by various past primary candidates:
Please let us know if any links are broken or if you have notes that you would like added to the list (either hosted here or linked to an external site).