Hello, everyone today I will be writing about my experience with staying in hospital for a spinal injury and having a MRI scan. So it all started in February of this year, when I would get severe back pain whilst working at the nursing home, now I had never had problems with my back before so I knew something wasn’t right, so I went to see my GP which I had to see a different doctor, which he just told me it was normal for someone in my profession and said I was too young to have a injury on my back, so he gave me a website to look at to help with exercises. So I done those exercises and kept on taking pain killers, but it wasn’t working and was just getting worse as time went on so I decided to go back to see the doctor but had a different one again which he then told me that he thought I might of partially slipped a disc in my back and he prescribed me some strong painkillers called Tramadol, and some anti inflammatory tablets called Naproxen. These did work quite well for a couple of months, until I done something at work one day and I was in such bad pain with my back which went all the way up my spine to my neck and then down my legs and it would feel like pins and needles in my bottom area and I was struggling to walk let alone work. And I went back to the doctor which I got ANOTHER different doctor which he said their was not much he could do so he prescribed a stronger dose of painkillers and referred me to the physiotherapist.At this point I was in such pain with my back that I was taking Tramadol, Paracetemol and the anti inflammatory drugs all at a time which really knocks you out and can make you feel very drowsy, and even then the pain was still there. So a month or so past and I finally got to see the physio, which was very concerned and had to phone up the doctors to ask them to see me which she got me a emergency appointment with yet another different doctor, and once I got to the appointment the doctor check me over and my reflexes and said that she was very concerned about my nerves in my back and that area. And so she phoned up Southampton general hospital to see if I could have a emergency MRI scan, which I was lucky enough to be able to go in for one. At first we got told the wrong ward, so after a hunt through the hospital in a wheelchair we finally found the right ward in the minor injury spinal ward and I got a bed ( wasn’t my plan to stay in though) now after several tests, scans and questions ( including a scan with the really cold gel on my stomach) we had to wait for me to have a MRI scan which if you did not know is this really big magnetic cylinder scanner which you have to lie in it normally take from 30-90 minutes to do a scan depending on what part of the body is being scanned. The wait was so long like 2-3 hours. I finally got took down by the healthcare assistants (which it was really weird since that was my job, having someone do the stuff for me that I do for others, well most things anyway) when you go into the area where the scanners are your not allowed anything metal on you, so your bra, piercings or anything metal needs to come off, since the scanner uses a very strong magnetic field to work so if you have any metal on it will just rip off and could break the machine. Now when you go in the room you need to lie down flat on this board and they give you headphones or ear plugs and let you choose the radio station (I chose Capital FM) this is because the machine makes a very loud banging sound, which you can still hear but not as bad, now they make you comfortable in the machine and then slide you in to the long tight tube which can be very close and make you feel clostrophobic even though there is a constant cool air blowing through out the tube, but they give you a panic button to press if there is anything wrong, now I’ve had 2 MRI scans now but the one at the general was my first one so I was very worried and nervous so I just went to my happy place which for some unknown reason inside the scanner it smelt like the skyline and Butlins Bognor Regis so I went to there,closed my eyes and thought of my holidays there with my fiancé and family which really helped a lot, I mean near the end I started to get a bit clostrophobic and feel a bit sick but I just took deep breaths in the nose and out the mouth and I was fine. Now the scan lasts about 30 minutes and you can not move whilst in there otherwise it affects the image. So once it had finished I got brought back up to the ward at which point I was then waiting for the Surgeon to look at my scan which took hours at which point it was getting late at night and when he finally saw it they said they wanted me to see the neurologist in the morning so I had to stay overnight, which I really didn’t want too so my mum and nan left and I finally could have something to eat since they said I couldnt eat anything just Incase I needed surgery, and so I hadn’t ate in 12 hours and when I did get food they got me a tuna sandwich how boring, oh and a nice cup of tea which I very much needed. That night I hardly slept at all I must of got like 30 minutes sleep all night and got woken up at 6 in the morning, now I had more tests done and then had to have my worse fear a blood test now she needed to take 4 10ml vials of blood, which terrified me and then when she was doing the third vial my blood stopped flowing and so she had to try and get it to come again but it wouldn’t so someone came and tried again later on the other arm and got it straight away (thank god) and they gave me some super good looking stockings and socks to prevent blood clots in the leg . Now my mum came in to see me and once he finished work my fiancé also came to visit me which made me feel much better.Now I was just waiting for the neurologist to check me over and the time was ticking and I was getting very distressed and fed up and I suffer with anxiety quite badly and the stress triggered a sort of panic attack where I couldn’t stop crying and Conor, my mum and the nurse all had trouble calming me down, now barring in mind that I had not slept the night before, I was in a unknown environment and missed my family so I was very emotional and was thinking I was going to have to stay in another night. But then the neurologist finally came and done his tests and said that he wanted a fully spinal MRI scan but said I could have it as a outpatient and that I could be discharged, which I was so pleased about, so I got all of my stuff together, and then one on the night doctors came in and said I can’t be discharged since the day staff didn’t do the paper work which set off a major panic attack since I thought I was going home to be with my family I started crying and hyperventilating but one of the nurses had a word and they finally filled out my discharge papers and I was free to leave and was back in my own bed with my family. I went for my second MRI scan about 1 month ago at royal south Hants hospital and it took about 45-60 minutes and I was the first ones for that day,it wasn’t as bad since I knew what to expect but they never had headphones so I had to have ear plugs but I just went to my happy place again and it was over before I knew it. I still haven’t got any results they said they will send them to my doctor when they have them in a couple of weeks but still nothing, I will keep you all updated about it.
I hope you enjoyed hearing about my experience In hospital and having a MRI scan, it was a very tiring and stressful experience but all of the nurses, healthcare assistants and most of the doctors was kind and helpful and I would just like to thank all of the staff for looking after me whilst in there.