Monday, 31 March 2008

MRI Scan - another failure






I was sent to a MRI scan last week on Thursday night 7pm at the hospital which is about 20 miles away - yes 7pm!!! There is so much demand for the scanner as it is the only one serving a radius of about 100 miles, and not enough time in the day to fit everyone in they run it up to 9am in the week!!It was actually disastrous and Barry and I had a bit of a row !

I have never been able to stay in an MRI scanner for a head scan - I have had two attempts before as I have been referred for one due to memory loss and having gone blind in one eye due to optic neuritis twice. But I tried both times and just could not do it. If it was on any other part of my body I may have but a head scan is different.

Your head is put in a cage and you can not move and your head had to be right in the middle of the scanner and it is a narrow space that you can not get out of unassisted ( you have to press a button for them to move the platform out of the scanner) and your head is about 4 inched from the top of the tube and if you have never been in an MIR scanner you will not understand - but it is not unusual for people not to be able to do it especially if the scan is the head - apparently they have at least 5 fail to be able to do it a week on average.......so I know it is not just me?

Most people fail due to claustaphobia, which most did not know they had until they tried this procedure. But for me it is not claustiphobia exactly – I have been caving in my youth in very enclosed spaces and this was fine as long as I could move along and make progress and get out under my own steam – for me it is the lack of control, not being able to get myself out under my own steam – and having to stay still in that position for up to 20 minutes

But the reason it was so disastrous was when I was referred for this MIR - I told the HIV consultant that I have a problem with not being able to do a MIR scan and she said she would contact them with a view to my taking some sedation – intravenous diazepam etc

But when I got there they had heard nothing from her or anyone else.
It is one thing not being able to do it, but another telling my consultant the situation, asking for some help with it, yet getting there and nothing at al had been said to the operators! I felt I had completely wasted their time – and mine, and Barry’s.

I did have another go, hoping it would be OK this time and managed the first initial scan that only took 30 seconds – but I just could not do for any more time than this, as the rest of the scans would take at least 10 minutes and I could not stay in there another minute!!.

I was also told buy the MIR operators that they can not offer what I was suggesting i.e intravenous diazepam anyway. They can only suggest you get oral diazepam from your GP – which I did not suggest as I know it would not work but that intravenous diazepam I have had for many procedures and dentist ops, so I know this works.

But apparently they can not give you intravenous diazepam as they can not check your breathing etc while in the scanner due to it being magnetic resonance and so not being able to put electronic equipment on you while in it.
If I had been told this before I would not have wasted everyone’s valuable time by going to an MIR appointment as I would have known I could not do it!!!

Apparently the only way if you can not do it is to have a general anaesthetic – which seems over kill and I can not understand why that can not do intravenous sedation yet they can do an general while in the scanner?

Apparently it is something to do with the fact you breath on your own with sedation but with a general you can be incubated ( I think this is it ?)

Anyway I failed and it was a complete waste of time

They had my records that I had tried to do a MIR head scan twice before but failed to do it . And why did not HIV consultant send me anyway and not do what she said she was going to do i.e. talk with the MIR department first??

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

ihave just had an mri scan and can fully understand your feelings, at first i asked them to take me out of it straight away as i was having a panic attack, it was awaful then after some reassurance from a nurse i tried again i lasted for about 10 minutes i couldnt believe i ha dstayed in for that long.
you get so clostraphobic its terrible, i dont think i could do it again

Veritee said...

Hi - I am so sorry you have had to go through this too. It really is awful/impossible for some people and I am certainly one of them. But you stayed in it a lot longer than me!

As I have not managed that long in the 3 times I have now tried.

However they are now going to give me a CT scan instead . As I have had theses before and as it is not such a narrow 'tube' and therefore not so claustrophobic I have been able to do it in the past.

It does not tell you as much as MRI but it will give you an indication as whether you need an MRI under complete anesthetic.

So perhaps ask for this as this is the direction I am going now.
Let me know as could do with the support from others going through this

karenza999 said...

Hi there
I know you posted a long time ago, but I just read it today. I also failed my mri scan because of that cage thing. Im sure i would be able to do it apart from that. Im just wondering how you are doing now. Iv got a sedative to take orally when I finally pluck up the courage to go and get one again.