Monday, March 13, 2017

I Have No Friends In Enclosed Spaces

As noted on this blog on Friday, March 10, 2017, Legends of the Fall - Part 4, I experienced a TIA, a transient ischemic attack as represented in this graphic reenactment. 



Some people call a TIA a mini-stroke, because the symptoms are those of a stroke but don't last long. It's important to get to the bottom of what precipitated this attack because a TIA can be a warning a stroke in the future. To that end, I met with a neurologist who noted my face was kind of droopy on one side but hey, that might be just how I look. 

So I was scheduled for an MRI scan. MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging which is a marvel of medical technology still stuck in the 1990s. The NRI scanner is a big honking tube that makes lots of loud noises (BEEPS! GROWL! SCREECH!!! BUZZZ!! HONK!!! BLEEE---URP!!). 

You lie in this tube and are told to DO NOT MOVE!! FOR GOD'S SAKE, WHATEVER YOU DO DON'T MOVE!!! And just relax, okay? Okay!

This is not getting scanned by a tri-corder on Star Trek. 

The first attempt at getting an MRI did not go well.  Here is a graphic reenactment of my reaction to this process.  



Turns out I'm claustrophobic.  

OK, I'm not what you say a big fan of being closed in a tight space, but who is, right?  But I did not expect this to happen: 

Todd, the MRI tech: OK, Mr, Long, you're ready to try this? 

Me: Yeah, Todd. Let's get this over with, Todd

Todd: OK then. Let me know if you have any problems. 

Me: Will do, Todd! I got this, Todd! 

A minute later....

Me: I THINK I NEED TO GET OUT OH HERE.... er, DUDE? MAN? Mister Man?!?!

Yes, I forgot his name was Todd

So I was rescheduled for a second attempt which was Saturday, 2 days ago.  This time....

1) They used a bigger MRI scanner. 
2) I took a Valium before hand.  

I was a little disappointed by the Valium; i was expecting a more dramatic result as I had never taken one before.  

My MRI tech was a young woman named Sara whose name I did not forget because my brain helpfully put on replay "Sara" by Feetwood Mac which is one of the most chilltastic tunes of all time. (Click here to hear for yourself.)  

Despite the Valium, Fleetwood Mac's Sara AND Sara's periodic and reassuring hand on my right calf, I still experienced stress. 

The surface you lie on in an MRI scanner is very flat and very unforgiving on the lower back. As the pain continued to grow and I couldn't adjust myself to alleviate, I felt a low level of panic start to set in.  But before i could get this...

Me: I THINK I NEED TO GET OUT OH HERE.... er, LADY? WOMAN? Er....Miss Woman?!?!

The scan was over.  

Sara: We're all done, Mr. Long. You did just fine. 

Me: Sara, you are the poet of my heart.  

So what next? The results of the scan will go to my neurologist today and good or bad, well, that just material for a future blog post. 

Until next time, remember to be good to one another. 

All Things Must Pass

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