Cryostat Ergonomics

No matter how tall you are it seems you’re never the perfect height for everything in histology to be comfortable. If you are tall, bending over the cryostat everyday can begin to place strain on your back. Though budgets may be tight, don’t be afraid to ask for a decent chair! A drafting chair where you can adjust the height is perfect and be purchased off of Amazon or Staples. Many histology vendors also sell their own specific cryo chairs and stools with the same adjustable features. Some are also sit/stand stools, which allow you to rest while standing and easily adjust your posture to avoid being stuck in an uncomfortable position for an extended period of time. Saddle seat stools are also common for ergonomics as the “waterfall effect” where your legs hang naturally from the stool while sitting, helps circulation in your lower legs.

Another option is to raise the cryostat itself using a platform underneath it. There are cryostats that have this feature built in, though they can be out of your price range if you work in a small lab. If that is the case, get someone handy to build a stationary platform to place underneath the cryostat. Just be careful moving the cryostat onto it! Cryostats are heavy, yet delicate machines. You want to try and keep it in the upright position, without laying it on its back so as to avoid damaging the compressor and causing a refrigerant leak.

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