Friday, May 29, 2009

First Week as a Lab Animal Veterinary Intern

My first week at NIH National Cancer Institute as a SCRTA (which=intern, but they love acronyms there) was pretty spectacular despite getting up around 6:15 every morning.

All of the veterinarians I am working with are patient, knowledgeable, and nice. It is a very welcoming learning environment. Instead of feeling like I am in their way, they have made me feel very comfortable and excited to learn. I completed my medical evaluation and training by the end of Wednesday and performed my first sugeries ever on lab mice. I began practicing a vasectomy technique I will be using for my summer reasearch project on analgesia/anesthesia and post-op pain management. I am very excited about this project and the surgerical experience I will be getting.

Today I shadowed a lab vet's rounds with mice, frogs, and rabbits and helped perform health checks on the mice. I also got to practice an intrafemoral bone marrow injection technique that is growing in popularity with stem cell research.

I ended the week on a high note meeting with the primate veterinarian on her goals for the summer. I will be doing some research for the staff on different topics, devise new enrichm,ent ideas, play with some of the more "bored" primates, perform intubation, shadow surgery, blood collection and physical exams, and work up some cases.

It is looking like a busy, but very meaningful and educational summer!

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