You might be asked to participate in an eye tracking exercise like the one shown above. All of the equipment is just used to keep your head still and to track your eyes.
I just wanted to let you all know about this schizophrenia research study I am most likely going to be participating in and I hope that if any of you out there are interested, you will join in on the study! Well, as you might know, I got a new job at schizophrenia.com. Well, one day I was visiting the site and an ad popped up looking for research participants for this schizophrenia research study! Here is the link: http://www.schizophreniaresearch.net/Involved.asp
Unfortunately, at this time it isn’t an international study, but it IS a national study in the United States, so if you live in the US you can participate if you qualify! I don’t know about if you live in Canada or other places but can travel to the US. It is worth checking out. There are several sites around the country that are participating: Boston, New York, Denver, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Diego and Philadelphia. The cool thing is that they will reimburse you for travel expenses, they pay for your hotel, and they pay you for being in the study. They don’t pay a million dollars, but they do pay you a little bit, so that is nice.
Also, they do NOT ask you to change your medicines or try any new medicines which is really great for me, because I don’t want to switch meds. If you are NOT taking meds they will NOT make you take meds. All they ask you for is a blood sample, a urine sample and for you to do some mental exercises related to the study. This study is funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health, NOT by pharmaceutical companies. There is no medicine trial involved.
So, basically, they need one family member who has schizophrenia and other family members who do not. I encourage anyone who might be interested to contact these researchers to see if you qualify. It really might help unlock the puzzle of schizophrenia in some way! And, they aren’t going to do anything to hurt you. The most painful part will probably be the blood draw, but that only hurts for a few seconds. They need the blood draw to check the DNA stuff.
So, all of your participating family members and the person with schizophrenia will be paid. The only thing to get past is the blood draw basically. They aren’t going to try to trick you in any way. You will just do some simple tests and they collect the data and you are done! They will probably do an eye tracking exercise like the one pictured above, but again, it doesn’t hurt. All they do is track your eye movements. There will probably also be a lot of interviews. It takes maybe 2-3 days and they will provide you with lunch and breaks and everything.
I think it will be really quite fun and I look forward to being able to help in research that might one day unlock the mysteries surrounding schizophrenia. Also, I have participated in research studies before and they are always very fun. Basically they ask you a lot of questions and they look at your medical records and you get paid. It is easy and you feel good knowing that by just participating you can help in the search for cures or preventions for future generations!
So, I hope you will join me in participating if you can. And feel free to let me know if you are participating or if you have any questions that I can answer. I’m sure most of your questions can be answered by getting in touch with the researchers. And remember, just because they are researchers doesn’t mean they are scary people. Under their white lab coats they are just like you and me! :)