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Preparing for the Thrombosis Practical

Learn more about preparing for the thrombosis practical.

The aim of this practical is to investigate the effect of thrombosis. We will do this by first making a mock thrombus out of jelly, then using this to mimic the effects of thrombosis. Remember that you don’t have to do the practical, but it can help your learning if you do. If you’re not doing the practical yourself, you should still watch the video.

Before starting this practical make sure that you have the following items on a tray or large plate ready to use:

  • instruction sheet
  • worksheet
  • pen/pencil to write with
  • apron
  • access to demonstration videos
  • sink area (or if not possible access to a tap and use of a washing up bowl or bucket)
  • tray, plate, or suitable working surface
  • packet of jelly (cubes). any colour will do but red is more fun!
  • several standard round balloons
  • knife
  • plate
  • stop clock or clock with second hand
  • access to hot soapy water
  • paper towels or dish cloth
  • suitable disinfectant
  • waste bag

Download a printable version of the Week 2 home practical guide: Investigating the effect of thrombosis.

You might like to share photos or even videos of your home lab or your jelly thrombus, in which case you’ll also need a camera or other suitable device. If you’re taking the photos or video yourself, remember to wash your hands well after touching the jelly using hot soapy water. You might find it easier to ask a friend or family member to take photos or videos for you. You can share your images and films on the Heart Health Padlet wall. Please note this Padlet wall includes images and observations from a previous run of this course, which can be added to.

How to use Padlet

Find out how to use Padlet by reading the guide in the FutureLearn FAQ.

Health and Safety

All of the practicals in this course are optional. Practical work aims to apply the theory already covered, enabling a deeper understanding of the material. If you are unable to, or do not wish to carry out the practicals, it is still recommended that you watch the videos to gain better understanding of the subject, and so that you are able to take part in discussions.

This practical involves working with jelly, balloons, water, and a knife. There are several main risks associated with this practical:

  • Risk of severe allergic reaction for anyone with a latex or jelly allergy
  • Risk of injury from the knife. Use of knives poses a risk and should only be carried out by competent adults. Those under the age of 18 should be supervised by a parent or guardian
  • Risk of choking on the balloons
  • Risk of slipping and falling on spilled water. Water poses a slip hazard, particularly as this practical has potential to be messy
  • Risk of water damage to your mobile device. Protect your mobile device by placing it inside a clear plastic bag and keeping it away from the immediate work area

People who may wish to NOT participate in the practical:

  • Those with a latex allergy

As for any practical work avoid eating, drinking, chewing gum, chewing pen lids, and directly touching your computer or mobile device during the practical.

At the end of the practical, dispose of your waste responsibly. Wash all utensils (knife, pens, plates, trays, etc) with hot soapy water. Wipe down all surfaces with an appropriate disinfectant at the end of the practical. Finally, wash your hands thoroughly with hot soapy water.

© University of Reading
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Heart Health: A Beginner's Guide to Cardiovascular Disease

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