Health Watch:
The Graduate Student's Guide to Self-Diagnosis and Treatment


(3 AM Version)



It is not unusual for a grad student to feel strains and stresses in the
body during late night lab marathons.  In spite of this fact, there is an
appalling shortage of health clinics open at the hour that these symptoms
usually begin to manifest.  In recognition of this deficiency, this
`how-to' list has been compiled to aid the graduate student in this time
of need.


Symptom         Probable cause               Treatment(*)
=======         ==============               =========

Aching legs     Frequent trips to            Move the equipment into
                not-so-near neighbouring     the lab you are working
                labs to use equipments not   in.  Those with a sense of
                found in your own.           humor can try asking thei
                                             P.I.'s to buy them their
                                             own equipment.

Burning         Eyeballs attempting to       Confine all gel destainin
sensation in    crawl out of your sockets    practices to your boss's
eyes            in a bid to escape chronic   office. (Fumehood?!  We
                exposure to acetic           don't need no stinkin'
                acid/methanol vapours that   fumehood!)
                have equilibrated with the
                lab's already volatile
                atmosphere.

Inability to    Neck injury incurred while   Accept as a fact that the
turn head       trying to simultaneously     moment your back is
                watch column not run dry     turned, the column will
                while playing ``Cat          run dry on you anyway.
                Shaver'' on the computer.    Enjoy your game.

Burning         Unsafe use of ethanol        Visit your local burger
sensation on    during flame                 joint and beg for a
head (usually   sterilization.               hairnet donation.  (This
preceded by                                  presumes that you don't
the crisp                                    work there part-time to
scent of                                     make up the balance of
melting hair)                                your salary, in which case
                                             you should already have
                                             your own hairnet.)

Lightheaded     Sleep deprivation.           Practice performing simple
giddiness                                    lab techniques while
                                             sleeping.  You can pipett
                                             water instead of chemical
                                             to start with.  Soon you
                                             will find yourself able t
                                             catch up on your sleep
                                             while doing that
                                             all-important mini-prep o
                                             western blot!  (This
                                             suggestion strongly
                                             endorsed by the
                                             inexhaustable Dr. Kay.)

Lower back      Centrifuge rotors            Take sample with you on
pain                                         any one of the numerous
                                             spinning rides at the
                                             amusement park and hold
                                             the tube away from the
                                             center of rotation as far
                                             as possible.  Ride for 3
                                             hours or until nausea
                                             ensues.


(*)Suitable replacement for all suggested treatments is to go home
already!







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