Friday, 1 February 2013

The Condition: Don't Wanna Go In The Machine (again).

MRI Scanner 02
The neurologists currently caring for my well-being want me to be put back in the MRI scanner so an examination of my spine can be carried out.
There's a suggestion that the nerves at the base of my spine may be 'diseased'.
I don't like word 'diseased'.
It has connotations.

My first encounter with the MRI scanner did not go well.
I was disturbed by my reaction to the experience.
The run up to this latest scan caused me sleepless nights and it seems, no matter how much I try to analyse the situation, fear trumps rationality ever which ways up.

Linda accompanied me to the scan this time as it doesn't look weird if I'm holding her hand.
If I'd asked Mystic Rog to come with me holding hands may have lead to considerable misunderstanding.

 08:20 and I'm back in the MRI anti-chamber.

A very nice nurse asked me all the same questions I'd been asked the last time I was there.
She had an MRI scanner picture book for me to look at.
I was surprised to discover the scanner was open at both ends and is actually a torus shape.

I told her my previous experience of being inserted in the machine had not been a good one and asked if she had any advice on what approach I should take.
Should I try to block it out like I did on that first time or should I stay 'in the room' so to speak?

The poor woman didn't really have a definitive answer, but told me she'd keep me informed as to what was happening throughout the process and said that I should think of it as being inserted into a large toilet roll.

I entered the scanner chamber and assumed the prone position.
Then I had to get back up again as I had to have a cod-liver oil capsule taped to the top of my spine.
I didn't catch the reason of this, if in fact there was one.
I'm sure they know what their doing.

I lay down, My head and neck are clamped, and I'm inserted.
No headphones due to the neck clamp, earplugs this time.
Am I Okay?
Yes, I'm Okay.

I look at the mirror and straight into the control-room's smoked glass window.
I can see the nice nurse and the operator.

I can see my fingers.
I make my fingers do some energetic dancing.

I'll cut a 25 minute story short.

The nice nurse came in before each scan telling me when it was about to start and how long it would go on for.

That's all I needed to know.

I feel a bit silly about my reaction to the first scan.
I'm probably not cut out for psychological techniques.
If laying on one's back, eyes tight shut, trying to think of anything but what was happening, and all the time shaking with fear can be described as a 'psychological technique'.

I also had to have a chest X-ray which seems to be done in a photo-booth nowadays.

Linda and I went for a coffee in Bognor Regis's new Sainsbury's supermarket.
The cafe is on the upper floor and affords a panoramic view of the surrounding trading estate.
I scratched an itch at the top of my neck and found the cod-liver oil capsule still taped there.
I swallowed it.