Sunday, September 27, 2009
Caudal Procedures... Not fun. The night before I did my first procedure the doctor casually told me while I was in a group of about fifteen people that I'd be doing a procedure tomorrow. I looked at him like "Wait, what EXPLAIN!" He told me that I would go upstairs for about 20 minutes get stem cell shots in my back then lay in bed for a couple hours. I had no idea what that meant exactly, but I knew to trust him so I said okay. Even though I'm numb I still want to know if something should hurt and if it should how painful should it be. Everyone was giving me different answers about it, saying well it hurts, but not that bad or along those lines. One person kept repeating over and over again that it was the most painful thing they have ever experienced. The rest of that night went fine, and I was supposed to start my procedure at 10 in the morning. I ended up going around 11:15ish. They hoisted me onto a table and the table was then lowered so my head was towards the ground, I felt like I was going to slide right off. Two nurses had to hold my legs down so I didn't slide around. The doctor then took a needle and went to the very bottom of my spinal cord and shoved the needle right on in. He then injected three doses of the stem cells in through that needle. It took about twenty minutes to do the whole thing, roll me in, get me on the bed, do the shots, and get me back off the bed and into my own room. I had to lay flat on my back and the elevator here isn't big enough to hold a stretcher so two men had to hold each end and carry me down the stairs that way. That was so scary I could have sworn I was starting to tip. They got me into my room and transferred me back in my bed. Then came the best part of all of it. They lifted the bottom of my bed up and stuck two bricks under each leg to keep me at an angle. Nobody really told me how long I was supposed to lay on my back for, but my nurse said five hours (others have said four.) I tried to rest for about an hour or two, but then I "woke up" and wanted to move and do something. I then watched old episodes of Melrose place for two hours, and after that got SUPER bored and restless. After finally being told I could move I got out of the room so fast and went down to the lobby to just hang out. The worst part of the Caudal Procedure was that I psyched myself out when they were giving me the injections all because I was imaging what that one person was saying about how it was the most painful thing. I was freaking out because the last thing I wanted was to suddenly feel the most pain ever, and I didn't stop to think about all of it. That one little thought wouldn't leave my mind and I was suddenly getting flashbacks of all the pain I have experienced and that is the last thing I would ever want, to have all that pain again. I've learned from that one experience that no matter how much pain it will take, I am going to do it to get myself well. I'd do anything to be healthy again so pain I guess isn't that much of a deal. I will never fully understand why I freaked out so much, but now I know.