Currently, 6-8 slots are made available for PET activation studies each week. These are allocated to various projects by [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org Adrian Owen] who should be contacted for details. Slots are booked about one month in advance and will be allocated according to the timing of the project [wiki:ProposingStudies proposal] and presentation at [http://www.mrc-cbu.cam.ac.uk/Seminars/IIG_Seminars.html IIG]. In general, there are 2-3 projects running simultaneously, each project being completed over the course of 2-3 weeks.
In general, there are three slots on each scanning day and the schedule for each of these slots is as follows:
SLOT 1: 1st subject: Arrive at 8.00am for screening for MR (at 8.45).
PET follows immediately. Scanning preliminaries (lines inserted etc) to begin at 9.30 am and to be finished by 11.30 am.
SLOT 2: 2nd subject: Arrive at 10.30am for screening for MR (at 11.15) and
PET preliminaries at 12.00 to be finished at 2.15pm.
SLOT 3: 3rd subject: Arrive at 1.00 pm for screening for MR (at 1.45) and
PET preliminaries at 2.30 to be finished by 4.30 pm.
Please note that timings can change and the timings for your slots may not necessarily follow this schedule. It is always advisable to call Jackie Jenkins at the WBIC on 331820 at least two days prior to each scan to confirm that timings are still current.
Once you have been allocated slots for your project, it is up to you to find subjects. Details of how to recruit subjects and important [http://www.mrc-cbu.cam.ac.uk/Imaging/Cambridge/volunteer_sheet.shtml volunteer health related information] can be found on [wiki:FindingSubjects these pages.]
Please be aware that being allocated a slot does not guarantee that the scan will be performed at that time and on that day. There are many factors which result in changes, sometime at the last minute. In particular, we are obliged to cancel activation slots at short notice should it become necessary to scan a clinical case at that time. This does not happen very often, although it is important to inform volunteers when you recruit them that a certain amount of flexibility on their part may be necessary. If a scan should be cancelled, then Jackie Jenkins will normally call the principal investigator with details. For this reason, it is important that Jackie Jenkins is provided with a main contact person for each study before the first scan. It is also advisable to call Jackie a day or so before each scan to confirm that it is going ahead.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT ABORTED SCANS.
While it is always possible that scans will not go ahead for unavoidable reasons (clinical scans, etc), there are many other factors which regularly result in unfilled or cancelled slots and most of these are avoidable. During the last 3 years the two most common reasons for cancelled activation studies are:
- Volunteer has medical history that precludes him/her from participation.
This occurs VERY often, even though it should really never occur. Although volunteers are medically screened immediately prior to their scan by a medical clinician, they should be generally by one of the investigators during the initial recruitment (i.e. long before the day of the scan). Please see this document [link] for a list of questions to ask potential recruits in order to avoid this problem and this list [link] of exclusion criteria for PET and fMRI activation studies. It is always advisable to start at a relatively vague level e.g. "have you ever spent any time in hospital" and go from there. Often, volunteers will have circumstances where it is not clear whether or not they can participate (i.e. they have only got one leg). In such cases, please call a WBIC clinician (David Menon, Nahal Maviddat), to consult before the day of the scan. If the volunteer turns up and is disqualified on the day, you will lose your slot.
- Volunteer doesn't show up. Most often this occurs because volunteers forget or sleep in. We urge you to call the volunteer a couple of hours before their scan and/or the day before to remind them. If possible, get a phone umber from the volunteer for where they will be immediately prior to the scanning time. This also helps if the scan has to be cancelled at the last minute.