Yesterday I did a post on being a Human Lab Rat for an asthma study. I wasn’t totally honest, this was not the only medical study I participated in.
After participating in the asthma study, I guess the research people loved me! I was precise in recording my symptoms and at-home testing/diary (yep, I’m a nerd) and apparently I was also good at verbalizing how I was feeling and was in-tune with how the medicine impacted my symptoms. Who knew I would be such a good test subject?!?
I guess all the research coordinators talk amongst themselves because all of a sudden I was getting called for various studies. Seriously, I was like a celebrity in the medical research test subject world. They all wanted me, haha!
Plus I strangely enjoyed participating and before I knew it, I was making some good cash being a research test subject.
I did a sleep study, another very interesting and informative study:
- I had stay the night two consecutive nights in the sleep lab. They hook you up to all these wires and you sleep in a little room where they video tape you all night. They can tell how long it takes you to fall asleep and how many times you wake up during the night (and various other things).
- During the over-night sleep study, I was told I was one of the best sleepers they have seen. I fell asleep in 8 minutes and only woke up briefly once during the night (they did not record me sleep walking or talking as I have the history of doing, see THIS post).
- Based on the results, I was diagnosed with Non-Restorative Sleep (I get 9+ hours of sleep a night, but never wake up feeling refreshed, who knows if it is legit infliction).
- I tested a pill that was for non-restorative sleep and I SWEAR it helped; you took the pill right before you went to sleep and it allegedly would help you get the right type of sleep to wake up feeling refreshed. Who knows if I got a placebo or not, but I would wake up every morning ready to take on the world.
- I think I made $500 off this one.
Then I did a pain study, which allowed me to spend 2 days in a bed hooked up to morphine (BEST. STUDY. EVER):
- They did a baseline assessment on my pain tolerance. They used a warming plate that heated up to varying temperatures and put it against my skin. I told them the pain number (1-10) associated with the temperature or when it was too hot for me to tolerate. (By the way, my pain tolerance is ridiculously low and I would dramatically scream out all the time… the nurse would roll her eyes and record the number, she was not impressed)
- Then I did two 12-hour days in the hospital. They would measure my pupil dilation (morphine makes your pupils dilate) and then give me varying amounts of morphine through an IV. They would also do the same pain tolerance test with the warming plate every few hours.
- The size of my pupils would tell them if the morphine had kicked in and obviously I would become more tolerant to pain. I also got really silly when they administered the morphine. I’m sure I entertained the nurses.
- I learned that morphine makes you feel really good. I also felt superhuman and had a much much higher pain tolerance. I can see why morphine can be addictive!
- I think I made $750 to lay in bed getting legal and free morphine. Glorious.
Don’t judge me that I made side cash from being a human lab rat…. it was actually fun in a strange way. My scientific side found it really interesting!