Research

Noncontact Sensing of Emotion and Stress Using Laser Doppler Vibrometry

Reference Number: 201109205

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THE STUDY?

The purpose of this research is to investigate the possibility that some functions of the body can be measured using a laser light directed at the skin. The measures we obtain using the laser will be compared with measures obtained with more usual methods. We also hope to determine whether we can sense, using the laser method, changes in the body associated with mental work and with emotions.

WHO IS NEEDED?

Individuals age 18-65, in good health and a current non-smoker

WHAT IS INVOLVED IF I PARTICIPATE?

Duration: One 2-4 hour session
 
Tests/Procedures: We will attach wires at several places on your chest, arms and face in order to obtain direct measurements of your heart rate, breathing, blood pressure and muscle activity. We may use a camera to measure your eye movements. We will also shine a laser beam at several places on your skin, which may include your face, neck, hand and finger. Measures are obtained while subjects participate in simple laboratory stress tasks (e.g. mental arithmetic, viewing pictures, immersing your hand or foot in cold water) or simple physiological maneuvers (e.g. holding the finger still against elastic tension, standing/supine position). You may be asked to complete questionnaires that include questions about personality and typical sleep behavior.
 
Risks: The cold water (if used) can be very uncomfortable. If it becomes too uncomfortable, you are free to remove your foot or hand from the water.
You may object to the content of some of the pictures you may be asked to look at. If you object, you are free to close your eyes or look away from the picture.
The laser beam is classified as a type 2 device. This indicates that it is of low power. There is some risk that the laser can damage the eyes, if exposure continues for more than a few seconds. It is important that you do not stare directly into the laser beam (as with any laser). At no time will the beam be directed at the eyes.
You may experience emotional discomfort when answering some questions in the questionnaires. You may choose not to answer any question.
 
Benefits: We hope that the findings of this research will allow us to develop better methods, based on the laser, for measuring functions of the body methods that do not require direct attachments of electrodes or other sensors.
 
Compensation: $15.00 per hour

WHO IS THE PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR (DOCTOR)?

John Rohrbaugh, PhD

WHERE WILL THE STUDY TAKE PLACE?

40 North Kingshighway
St. Louis, MO 63108

CONTACT INFORMATION

Kay 314-454-1338
tabscottk@psychiatry.wustl.edu

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