Friday, May 14, 2010

Done with data collection!

Last night I enrolled my last dog! No more late nights in the hospital. Now I can just lie around and eat chocolates — I mean, analyze data and write frantically. When I got home last night I phoned my boyfriend and announced that I was done and intended to party hard for the rest of the night. He said, “Ice cream and lots of TV, then?” Well, and comfy pants, too.

It almost went awry. As I was setting up the A/V equipment to record Dog Number Thirty-Three, I overheard his surgeons talking about his radiographs. Wha-at? His hospital record had not mentioned radiographs! That would involve sedation. Dogs can’t be entered in my study if they’ve been sedated less than six hours previously. I sidled up to 33’s student and whispered, “Was he sedated today?” She nodded and opined that it had happened, who knows, maybe 3ish. Way too late.

I stifled a groan and dashed over to radiology to make sure and double-check the time. Radiology, however, had never heard of 33. Turns out he was going to get his radigraphs the next morning, just before surgery. Catastrophe averted. (I should mention that his student, not knowing that I had gone to follow up on this, actually also followed up on it, and left a note for me on the A/V cart noting that he had not been sedated that day. It was super nice of her, considering what long hours students work on their surgery rotations.)

So, having enrolled my 33rd dog in Phase Two, I am done. Phase One, by the way, has 28 usable dogs. So that’s 61 dogs total — but if you include the ones that didn’t give me enough spit, I actually enrolled more like 93 dogs. When I think how much work I did for each dog, I’m pretty impressed, and very glad to be done.

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