Hey guys! I am actually really excited that we get to talk about anything we want this week because I have really been struggling with an essay that I am writing, and could really use some help. I thought the reading we did in class today was really awesome, because it is so relevant to the re-purposing essay that we are writing. That being said, I am struggling to connect with my audience on a different piece that I am working on outside of class. If you guys remember, very early on in the reading, the author talks about addressing your audience correctly with the heart muscle analogy. I am currently writing a very similar scientific essay that needs to be read and evaluated by a board of doctors, science professors, humanities professors, and even simply members of the community. I am having a really hard time addressing my audience because they all come from such a different background about the material I am trying to present. I guess I am having trouble explaining my research to the people without much background in the topic of head and neck cancer and radiation therapies, while at the same time, appealing the doctors or science professors. The same problem arises in the opposite context, where I could use medical language and terminology to appeal to the doctors, but then most likely lose the interest of those who wouldn’t know what I was talking about. I want to give you guys an idea of what I am writing, because I know we all come from much different backgrounds, and I think you could give me some great feedback regarding my strengths and weaknesses. Here is an excerpt of the paper, which is currently just over 6 pages (single spaced) long. If you think I need to tone it down a bit, PLEASE let me know!
“A staggering 35,000 patients are expected to develop Head and Neck Cancer (HNC) each year. The standard of treatment for HNC currently involves radiotherapy of the affected region, however the detriments of this procedure are undeniable. Bone that has undergone radiotherapy is weakened, as bone growth and strength are suppressed within each individual bone cell. As a result, a number of HNC patients 1) develop a condition known as osteoradionecrosis (ORN) where bone dies as a complication of radiotherapy, 2) experience a pathologic fracture, a fracture that occurs as a result of weakened bone due to radiation or 3) develop a non-union, where blood flow to the bone is diminished. Our research seeks the use of preventative treatments, for example, two revolutionary drugs known as Amifostine (AMF) and Deferoxamine (DFO), as a replacement for the currently accepted invasive treatments of ORN, pathologic fractures, and non-unions. Using a rat model, we will simulate the conditions of HNC by administering radiation to the left mandible (jaw bone) of each subject. We will then surgically induce a pathologic fracture using a technique known as an osteotomy where we will saw through the bone completely behind the third molar of each subject. After the osteotomy, we will implant a distraction device, which allows us to pull apart the facture site, thereby simulating the effects of a true pathologic fracture. The subjects will be monitored for a 40-day consolidation period before anaylsis. The global hypothesis of our research is that the negative side effects of radiation can be prevented or reversed with therapeutic manipulations to allow for prophylaxis of ORN, radiotherapy induced non-unions and pathologic fractures.”
I am really looking forward to your feedback! Also, if anyone is interested in the research we are doing, I would be more than happy to discuss it further outside of class.
As for how I feel right now: