Monday, 10 June 2013

MRI Appointment

I think I may end up using the rest of my 'spoons' to write this post, but I thought I'd better write it whilst the appointment details were fresh in my mind.

I had my MRI appointment yesterday (9th June). I was actually quite nervous but mainly because I was worried about being bursting for the loo during the scan. I get incredibly anxious about being in situations where I can't just go to the loo when needed. I tend to have an overactive bladder anyway but just thinking about it makes me need it more frequently. It's one of the reasons I've stopped taking buses. The wait makes me anxious, by the time I'm on the bus I need it quite badly and spend the whole journey terrified I won't make it to a toilet on time. Very embarrassing so I would rather spend a bit more money on a taxi or get a lift if I can. Nowadays I tend to only go somewhere if my dad can take me anyway, especially due to my symptoms getting worse.

Well anyway, I got to my appointment early so had time to calm down a little. The hospital I'm referred to is lovely! Really clean, nice atmosphere, organised and friendly staff. It's so refreshing to see as my most local hospital is very overcrowded so quality of care (as an outpatient at least) leaves a lot to be desired.

I went up to the desk to sign in and the receptionist gave me a gown to change into. It was one of those very thin ones that you tie at the back. I wasn't allowed to wear a bra underneath so was very paranoid about being a bit exposed lol! Ah well, just got on with it.

When it was my turn, the radiographer asked me the general questions: Do you have a pacemaker in you, a stent, anything metal in your body, are you made of metal? (That last one was a joke :P) then I was called in a couple of minutes later. I needed the loo again by that time so was a bit nervous again (I hate my bladder).

For anyone who hasn't been in/seen an MRI, I'll explain what it looks like etc. It basically looks like a massive polo with a sort of bed in it. I don't know if it's just me but the 'bed' is actually quite comfy! You put your head in the head guard and they secure it round you. The radiographer also puts headphones on as the machine makes quite loud noises. I don't know if this is the case with every hospital but I was given the option to listen to some music. I guess it helps to calm you down/distract you whilst the scan takes place. Oh you also get a panic button to press if you do get too nervous. I guess this couldn't be fun for anyone with claustrophobia but you just have to lie back and relax as much as possible (but don't fall asleep lol).

There was a little mirror attached to my head guard so I could see where the radiographers were. This was quite reassuring too because it can seem a bit isolating. You can hear the noises but it shouldn't be overbearing. They're sort of similar to old printers and photocopiers.

I calculated, the amount of time I was in the scanner, by the number of songs I got through. This worked out as just over 15 minutes. It pretty much flies by!

When the radiographer came through to take my guard away and lower the bed, I stood up and got the most incredible head rush! Also had jelly legs. I must have been very relaxed lol. Ok so I just have to wait for a letter telling me when my next hospital appointment is so the results of the MRI can be discussed. I am interested to see if they did find anything, though it'll probably be clear as anything. Don't get me wrong, I don't want it to show up something scary, like a brain tumour, but it would be nice to not have to spend so much time fighting my corner when all the tests show up clear (well apart from Vitamin D). It would be nice to have something show up so I can say "See! This is what I've got, you can't take that diagnosis away from me. It's right here on the results. Now treat it!" It'd be something to make my invisible illness a little more visible.

I should be using my spoons to concentrate on bettering my health (as much as I can) rather than on proving I'm ill.

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