Team RetroPulse!

We are RetroPulse. We are a group of driven artists and musicians planning to make an impact on the music industry. Our music taste consists of a unique combination between Hip Hop, Electronic and a hint of Rhythm & Blues. Our goal is to create a sound that brings together these popular, powerful genres into a blend that well-represents the beauty of the art of music.

Team Members:

Emily Wilson - Emily’s experience in music entertainment, specifically reality television, has taught her how to be a leader in a collaborative environment. Singing as well has always been a major part of her life. She loves Hip Hop and House music and is determined to produce pieces within those genres as well as establish and advertise them as a part of a brand.

Xan Marsella - Xan has an incredible amount of experience vocally and instrumentally. She plays the ukelele and piano and also loves singing. Hip Hop and R&B are definitely within her interests, however her vocal tone tends to lead toward a more acoustic side. Xan loves performing and will work hard to develop entrepreneurial skills as an artist.

Connor McCarthy - Connor enjoys and has much experience with the production aspect of music. He loves to listen to and produce electronic music. Alternatively, Connor takes pleasure in performing songs, especially in the theatre realm. His talents with production software are a great addition to our team.

Michael Fulton - Michael produces music completely on his own and loves to create and listen to Hip Hop and Dubstep. He has worked hard on combining the two genres into an entertaining blend, which will contribute greatly to the blend within our team. His experience with playing piano and using his midi keyboard makes him a valuable component of RetroPulse.

While performing an ophthalmic exam on a dog the owner stopped me and asked what I was doing. When I explained the reason behind everything she said “oh, cool. I thought you were just poking her with your fingers.” I suppose to someone who doesn’t know, a lot of a physical exam can look just like the vet is petting or poking when in reality there is a reason behind it and lots of information is gained.

For an ophthalmic exam the first thing I do is watch the animal in the room. Is it squinting? Bumping into things? Rubbing its face? Then I put the animal up on the table and take a closer look at the face. First thing to check is facial symmetry. Are there droopy eyelids? Does one eye appear bigger or smaller than the other? Are there any masses, lumps, bumps anywhere? Then I will retropulse the eyes which means I gently push them back into the orbit (through closed lids) to see if there is a mass behind them that prevents this.

The next step is assessing menace. This is when I will make a fist and quickly but gently “knock” it toward one eye while keeping the other covered. This tests vision and also tests CN VII, the facial nerve. The signal must be picked up by the retina, travel down the optic nerve, go into the optic tracts, and then into the visual cortex of the brain. Then a signal must travel down CN VII and make the eyelid blink. So that one simple motion tests two entire pathways. Next is the palpebral response. This is when I gently tap on the eye lid and see if there is a blink response. Once again this is testing CN VII but also tests CN V, the facial nerve, which is responsible for transmitting the touch signal from the lids to the brain.

If a dog is having an eye exam because the owner thinks there is some vision loss I will do a tracking test. To do this I tear a small piece of a cotton ball, hold it above the animals head and drop it. If the animal can see they will follow it with their eyes and head as it falls.

Next the lights are dimmed and I get out the ophthalmoscope. I cover one eye and shine the light into it to see if the pupil constricts. Quickly I will look at the other eye to see if that pupil constricted as well. This is called testing the direct and indirect pupillary light response. First this tests the retina and the optic nerve (can they conduct the light signal?), it also tests CN III which is the occulomotor nerve, the ciliary ganglion, and the iris sphincter muscle. Because some of the nerve fibers cross over at the optic chiasm, shining light into one eye should cause the other pupil to constrict slightly even though it was not directly stimulated. Interestingly all of this can function completely normally and the animal can be completely blind. The signal does not have to make it into the visual cortex for the pupils to constrict, it is a separate pathway.

At the same time I am assessing PLR’s, I am using retroillumination to examine the anterior portion of the eye. This is when the light is directed into the eye and it reflects off the tapetum and back out the pupil. This should be a greenish/yellow light with no obstructions. This allows the viewer to look for cataracts, nuclear sclerosis, and masses.

The ophthalmoscope is switched from a bright spot of light to a slit beam. This means the light comes out in a straight line. This is used to examine the eyelid margins as well as the anterior chamber. This light should pass through the cornea and aqueous and shine onto the lens. If there is aqueous flare which is when the light beam can be seen as if going through fog it means there is uveitis present. This happens when inflammation is present and proteins, blood, and other foreign material can make its way into the eye and the light reflects off this. The lens is also examined at this time for any abnormalities.

Finally the last portion of the exam is looking at the fundus. This is the retina, tapetum, optic disc, and vessels at the back of the eye. The size and shape of the vessels and disc can indicate disease. Another interesting fact is that the optic disc is the only place in the body that the CNS can be seen from the outside. You are actually looking at the end of the optic nerve which connects to the brain. I also use an indirect lens which is a small glass lens that is held in front of the animal’s eye and a light source is held at the examiner’s temple. This causes the fundus to be magnified greatly and it can be examined easier. The downfall to this is that the lens flips the image upside and backwards so you have to keep it all straight in your mind.

That is a fairly brief walkthrough an eye exam. It seems fairly basic and quick when you watch it but it is amazing the amount of information you can get from it. See if you can watch your vet perform one and try to remember what each test is looking for.


RetroPulse has been working hard at one track. We feel that if we put all of our energy into only one song as a group, we can maximize the perfection of our craft. Xan has written an incredibly emotional song that has taken our sound to a whole new level. The lyrics have a dark yet empowering meaning that we can all appreciate. With a little help from Emily on the bridge, the song came full circle and Connor and Michael got right to recording it. We’ve been working hard at recording the vocals and editing the complex track. At this point, all that’s left is fine tuning the track and vocals. We’re so excited to complete our project.