anxiety, chronic illness, chronic pain, disabled, drugs, health, illness, medical marijuana, surgery

epidural steroid injection

on thursday i am going to have my sixth epidural  steroid injection. the injection helps control the pain from the problems in my back. i have spinal stenosis which is a narrowing of the spinal column which causes some if the discs to get squashed (like my technical term?) and pinch nerves.

i have problems at L4 and L5 as well as the sacroiliac joint. my pain doctor performs the procedure.

they say “procedure” but to me it seems a lot like surgery! i have to fast, stop taking NSAIDS several days before, etc.  i go to the surgery center and change into a hospital gown, a icky  papery shower cap sort of thing to gather up my hair. they give you cool socks with treads on the bottom. i love them. i’ve quite a collection now.

two nurses come in and put you under a blanket from a warmer, oh jeez that feels good. no matter how hot it outside, it’s freezing cold in the surgery center, plus it’s just reassuring to have a warm blanket over you. they put in an iv and ask me a million questions. even though i’ve done this many times, i still feel a little scared each time.

the nurses are so very very nice. when the doctor finishes her previous case she comes in and talks to me and then they roll me into the OR which is incredibly cold. i have to roll over onto the operating table and lay on my tummy. there is a head rest, like they use during massages. they start giving me fentynal and versed–conscious sedation. you are high as a kite, so it’s almost fun. lol

i hate laying there for 45 minutes with basically nothing on, my butt just hanging out, uncovered. joy. luckily the drugs make you not care too much because i find it extremely discomforting to be nude in a room full of people. there are lots of nurses. the doctor wears a lead apron because they use a giant x-ray  machine that is mounted  on the ceiling and tilts around as they need it to. that’s how they know exactly where  to inject the cortisone…pretty important since they’re putting it in my spine. the injections hurt some going in, but after that it’s not too bad.

when they’re done i get back on the gurney, more embarrassment because the hospital gown is totally open and practically flapping around as you move. then everybody gets to see everything!  i’m sure they don’t give a shit, seen it a million times. but i do! once you’re on the gurney they immediately drown you in warm blankets. the feeling is so good, like the drugs, it’s almost worth it just for that. lol

in the recovery room they put ice packs on your back, keep you awhile for making sure your vitals are good and you’re not going to have a bad reaction or flip out or whatever.

omg i have to pee once i get out of the operating room, so that’s a priority! another time i had this surgery, the surgeon was an hour an half late so i feel asleep. i woke up  and they were rolling me into the OR and i had to pee bad, i mean really really bad. but we were practically there so i couldn’t say anything. it was horrible!  i was pretty sure i would wet myself on the table. that’s not so good for a sterile environment. thank goodness the drugs made it so i didn’t feel like i had to pee. when i got out of surgery, i didn’t have to pee badly, go figure!

you don’t stay in the recovery long and your ride comes and takes you home. you have to have someone stay with you for 24 hours. then the back pain kicks in. it’s pretty unfun for a few days. i’ve got quite a bit of various medical marijuana edibles for that time.

after that, you wait. sometimes the injections work and sometimes they don’t. it’s a crap shoot. last one keep my pain low for about 9 months! most of the others did nothing. but i’ll try anything time after and after.  the pain is very motivating.

so now i get to worry about it until 8am on thursday. 😦

i’ll be ok though, i always am. 🙂

Life, Uncategorized

i’m a ramblin’ gal

here you go, ramblin’ ramblin’

thursday  was the first  of my two surgeries, nerve ablations on the right side,this past thursday and on the left side in two weeks.

i dreaded it a lot because i’d never had one before and the doctor said i’d be on the table for 45 mins to an hour. it’s conscious sedation, so that’s a loooong time. with the epidural steroid injections it was more like 15 minutes to do a couple of shots. this was nine needles that went in my spine which cauterized the nerves. hopefully when they fully die, i’ll feel a lot better. we’ll see. most of what they’ve done hasn’t helped much at all, but i’ll keep hoping.

i can’t wait to go to the movies again! it’s been a week since i last went. peter and i saw “the BFG,” which was awesome. this weekend it’s star trek. peter wants to see it too, so we’ll probably see it next weekend, but i’ll probably see it this week, too. there are just too many children’s movies out now! i saw zootopia and finding dory and of course the BFG. now we have the secret life of pets, no thanks! and the ice age (i’ve forgotten the whole title) double no thanks. there’s a horror film, which i’d normally choose right away, but it’s rated PG-13, so i hesitate. how can you have a good horror film that isn’t R rated??? i’m hoping Suicide Squad opens next weekend….oooooo!

i ate licorice for the first time in ages. i went to 7-11 to get my daily big gulp (always diet dr. pepper) and wanted candy. chocolate would melt in a moment because it’s so hot, so i got twizzlers, red ropes, of course. if you bite off both ends you can use it as a straw for your soda. it’s best with pepsi. that’s bizarre because i hate pepsi. i guess red licorice is the secret ingredient to making pepsi taste good.

we have the air conditioning on. i like to shut all the blinds and curtains to totally shut the world out. with the windows and doors shut i can’t hear anything from outside and vice versa! it gets dim and chilly. i put on long sleeve t-shirts and socks (i like the ones they give you from the surgery center) pj bottoms. i curl up on the couch and binge watch Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. i could talk about it all day but i don’t know anyone else who watches it. i just watched the first episode of the 3rd season. i’m getting dangeriously close to the current season! i’ll have to start checking out a new show to get obsesses with in a week or two.

i finally worked up  to having peter dye my hair. it’s been dyed black for 15 years or so. lately, since i haven’t been feeling well, and my least concern is my appearance, it’s been waaaaay too long between taking care of it. i was, am still, a little shocked at how much tof the hair that’s grown out was gray! that’s taken care of. shwew!  my face looks super pale now, surrounded by all that super dark black hair.  i’m always pretty pale so it hardly matters. i think i’ll have him cut my hair, too. i think i’d like 4 or 5 inches off. it’s hot, has a tendency to get tangled. i have split ends and the last couple of inches are scraggly.

we had japanese for dinner. it was good. yum yum miso soup!

if you found that interesting, i worry about you. i just typed until i didn’t feel like typing anymore. btw, my feet are really, really cold…i wish those surgery center socks were clean! now i have to find a pair that matches! gahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh