Having to explain gap in academia due to medical illness

To give a little better understanding, early on I had a hiccup in my undergrad, as my dad passed unexpetedly. I was excused from that semester, but following that I became very ill and I seriously messed up that following semester because I was too stubborn to withdraw, and then the next semester I had to withdraw late from a few classes because it was still too much for me. I rebounded the next semester and have been fine since, and actually have had to fly across states to get treatment for my condition at a specialty center for my disorder. How do I explain this but able to show AdComs that I am ok and able to withstand medical school? I’m somewhat worried about that, but I know it’s going to come up when they see my transcripts and the drop off and the upward trend following. Should I address it in the personal statement first?

If you do address it, you don’t really have to go into any more detail than you did on this post other than mentioning how you’ve obviously maintained a strong academic record since you were treated. They can’t pry into any medical stuff that you don’t want to address yourself, and they can’t discriminate against medical stuff that doesn’t affect your ability to meet the core technical competencies (see AAMC website). If you require testing accommodations for your illness, that’s a whole different process that would have to be addressed on its own and does require some evidence from your medical record.

If it has been awhile since that year, you could just let it go and see if it comes up in conversation. Or, instead address that period as a general hardship that you have overcome by x,y,z, grew academically and personally from that experience, and it won’t be an issue in the future.

That’s a good point. I still have 2 years of school so I have the opportunity to really put that behind me. Nothing affects my ability to meet the competencies or require certain accomodations for testing. The biggest insult to injury was when I tried to tough it out and it negatively affected my GPA, so I’m hoping they’ll see that I learned my lesson and that it’s better to take time off to get better than to push through, given the circumstances. Thanks!