A few years ago I joined the Biobank project. This project is a national and international health resource with research opportunities. UK Biobank aims to improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of serious and life-threatening illnesses – including cancer, heart diseases, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, eye disorders, depression and forms of dementia. It is following the health and well-being of 500,000 volunteer participants and provides health information, which does not identify them, to approved researchers in the UK and overseas, from academia and industry. I'm pleased to be part of this project to improve the health of future generations.

A couple of weeks ago I received an invitation to attend an Imaging Assessment.  My appointment was this afternoon. I had to attend the Biobank Centre in Walker on the outskirts of Newcastle. I arrived  at 1.15pm and left about 5 hours later.

First of all I did some cognative tests on the computer. ( Some were really difficult and I failed miserably )  Then some blood was taken.  Then X Ray Bone Density Scan which took around half an hour.. Then Brain MRI Scan.  Never had an MRI scan before.  So noisy.  Had to wear earplugs and headphones.  Part of the scan involved matching shapes and faces on a screen ans pressing a buzzer for the correct answer.  Not easy with all the noise that was going on - and having to keep still for around 40 mins.

I was glad when that was over - but then it was the next MRI scan - heart, lungs and abdomen. Earplugs again.  Noise again.  And this time I had to breathe in, breathe out... and then hold my breath. ( sometimes for a couple of seconds, sometimes for around 10 seconds ) For around 30 times. Whilst trying to stay as still as possible. Whew!.

Then I had a heel bone ultrasound , my blood pressure was taken and I did a " puff " test for lung function. 

Then they asked if I was willing to a have a heart monitor fitted - to wear for a fortnight.  I said " Yes " - so that was done.  Then back to the computer to answer some health questions - whilst eating a sandwich which was provided ( I was peckish by this time ).  Then I was given some results -  only the basic results are given to participants such as blood pressure, result of heel bone ultrasound and " puff test ".  The rest of the results are for research purposes. 

Then it was all over and I left to walk to the Quayside and catch the bus back to the centre of Newcastle.  Popped into Waitrose then the bus home. 

I took lots of photos down on the Quayside before and after my appointment.  The sky and light were lovely at around 6.30pm when I took my blip shots.

I have put the originals in my Extras but for my blip I did a bit of processing for Abstract Thursday.  The theme today is " Capricious " - meaning changing frequently, variable, unpredictable.  I think the sky fits the bill.  Thanks to Ingeborg for hosting the challenge.

( Well done - and thanks  - if you bothered to read all of the above.  Its rather long winded but its a record of my day.)

Steps today - 12,161

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