Sunday, April 28, 2013

My brain!!

this is a picture of my brain!! i got it this saturday, as i participated in a research study at harvard. i have always wanted to participate in a study, and every week we get a very, very, very long email listing all the studies that need volunteers. but only recently i finally picked out a study that seemed interesting to me, and not too invasive (so not having to take medication or overnight stays in the hospital etc etc). 
this was a study about ADHD, and i was the healthy control :). during my first visit they tested whether i was eligible. i had to solve some math problems (im not good at that at all!!) within a certain time frame, they tested my balance, whether i could sit still, and i had to do some other exercises. some were really not that easy and they didnt tell me how well (or bad) i did. i also had to read up some words (i had a bit of a disadvantage, not being a native speaker, but they said they would correct for that), and give the definition of others (i learned a few new words!). then during the second visit, this saturday, we did the real test. first i had to do a lot of weird stuff (like sticking out my tongue for a certain time with my eyes closed), walk on my toes or heels, jump while on one foot for 50 times, etc etc. that was all filmed and i hope that will never be released to the public.... :) then they used MRI to scan my brain while i did certain exercises. i had never had an MRI, so that was interesting. i spent 2 full hours in that thing.... what a noise! one of the exercises involved tapping with my finger in a certain rhythm for 8 minutes, while otherwise lying perfectly still. unexpectedly, that all was quite tiring!
but.... i thought it was really interesting to participate in someone else's scientific study, and everyone was really friendly. most importantly, ofcourse, i got a picture of my brain and 225 dollars towards my new laptop (i still didnt get one.... :( )