Wednesday, January 14, 2009


I'm a big girl now: I had my first MRI today. What fun! Actually, it wasn't bad. I'd talked to several people who'd had one and, like anything else, reactions varied. For some folks it was very difficult and stressful. For others, no big deal.

I was relieved beyond measure to learn I'm in the latter group. I'm sure my heartbeat and respiration were higher than normal, but I didn't feel like screaming. I thought that was a good sign.

Two things in particular made it bearable: They gave me headphones playing my favorite radio station, and the room was cool so I could feel fresh air coming into the tunnel. I can't imagine getting through 20-25 mins. of that racket without music to focus on, and if it the air had been warm and still, that might have been a problem. I'm not particularly claustrophobic but breathing stale air in a close environment can make me feel a wee bit panicky. And that most definitely would have sucked.

Surprisingly, the toughest part was dealing with my post-nasal drip. I was running late this morning and didn't use the neti pot* and oh, how I paid for that omission. It felt like I was trying to swallow a necktie. Since coughing was forbidden for most of the procedure, I swallowed a lot. Mmmm!

The procedure itself was kind of interesting. First, a short, 20 sec. scan. That gave me an idea of the volume level, which seemed tolerable. Then a minute, then 3.5 mins., then 4.5 mins., then two scans that took ~12 minutes total. It was interesting to note that the different scans each made a different sound; the first four parts anyway. After that I lost track. Too busy swallowing that necktie, I guess, and rocking out to Michael Franti & Spearhead.

The tech showed me some of the pix after and that was the best part. It was just black & white, but it was cool, just like on the TV. I really wish they could have rigged up some sort of display inside the tube. I would have loved to watch. Yeah, I'm weird that way**.

Then, just as I was ready to call it good, I learned that the paperwork I had authorizing the procedure was different from what they had. There was supposed to be an injection. Which, as you might guess, has to come before the MRI.

So I get to go back Monday morning and do it all over again. This time, new and improved with a big needle!

I'd better get to see the pix. And there damned well better be an injury discovered. That's all I'm sayin'.

* Have we talked about the neti pot? Oh, but we must!

** Ask Mr. B about his sentinel node mapping. I'm afraid I embarrassed myself there with my enthusiasm.


  1. If you ask them nicely they might give you a copy of the visuals from the scan. I actually provided mine to the naval hospital because they hadn't recieved them yet from the imaging service.
    glad it went well and you had no wires in your eyes...

  2. My experience years ago with an MRI was like yours (minus the post nasal drip). It was a little weird, but not a huge deal when all was said and done.

    On the other hand, I'm very afraid of what a neti pot might do!

    Happy Friday, Liz. Hope all is well in your dark-days corner of the world. ;)


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.