Thursday, June 10, 2010

Thursday Bloody Thursday

I went over to the local hospital today (nestled in the midst of a tall evergreen forest - so Vancouver Island) for what was supposed to be a fairly routine CT Scan - FYI a CT angiogram actually (just to make sure I wasn't going to be felled anytime soon by a great big brain aneurysm like my old dad).

So they have to start an IV so they can shoot in some sort of contrast, really quickly, at high pressure, while they are taking the special pictures - a whole lot of little slices that get reassembled into a 3d rendering of the blood vessels in my brain.

First they couldn’t get an IV going (scaredy cats - wouldn't even TRY. Said my veins were too tiny and deep) so they had to call in the “IV TEAM” – picture a bunch of nurses running down the hall pushing a cart full of medical supplies ahead of them - okay actually it was a single nurse wearing a fleece and cargo pants (again with the Vancouver Island thing), meandering in at her leisure . Anyway the “IV TEAM” got the line going and I was finally able to settle in for the test. I was advised that I might have a “warm, flushed feeling” and even possibly the sensation of “wetting myself” – but was reassured that NOBODY, EVER had actually wet themselves on the table (foreshadowing here).

So I’m lying very still during the test, waiting for that “warm flushed” feeling when they inject the dye into the IV line at very high pressure. Instead get a “cold wet” sensation along my arm , waist and hip, radiating down toward my bum. I lie perfectly still – assuming this must just be my way of responding to the IV, but kinda wondering if something has gone terribly wrong. And then of course thinking that pretty much EVERYONE getting this test has a moment of alarm when the dye goes in - because the feeling is so out of context....

But no – the cold wet feeling is NOT what I should have expected. In fact, the high pressure, large bore IV injector thingy had blown open and soaked me, the back side of my WHITE jeans (aaaargh), my very cute mostly-whiteJoe Fresh tunic (and my bra and underpants -okay beige, but still!) with a mixture of blood and IV fluid….It looked like a murder scene.

So they ended up having to fix up the IV, mop me up enough to continue the test, and then give me hospital clothes to wear home because my clothes were completely soaked with blood. I'm probably one of the only patients ever who went home from a CT scan with her clothes in a "patient belongings" bag. I think the folks in the imaging department felt pretty bad about what happened, but I assured them that being 45 years old, this was absolutely not the first time I'd gotten blood stains on a pair of white pants. (All the stains washed out with a good soak in cold water and Oxyclean, by the way).

And of course all this happened on an empty stomach because I was on clear fluids before the test. Oh my - I did not feel so well when I got home, especially when I realized that my underthings were actually STUCK to my body with dried blood and medical chemicals and I had to shower to get all the gore off me. Let's just hope this is the end of this, and I don't get a great big serving of brain aneurysm, AVM or tumour to go along with today's ick.

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