Can I Complain About My CT?


Alright so I’m going on Thursday. At first they they had all of these pre-screen questions. Hx of kindey disease, diabetes and such…nope, nope. It was for contrast, presumably? I didn’t know I was going to get shot up. It was confirmed for 0800hrs. Oh dear! Major travel to the downtown area so early! I’m not that far but far enough!

I received a call tonight that no, it’s actually for 1900hrs and I should be there for 1800hrs for Barium. Huh? Okay, maybe I’m not up on my CT abdominal procedures but Barium has nothing to do with any other pre-existing health conditions? I’ve had a barium swallow and no one cared to ask? Other contrasts might be different?

And between the differing appointment times what the hell are they doing?

PA had a CT of her bean years ago. Effexor+PA=fall down go boom. Especially at her highest dose–dear me. Even when it was lowered over time it was still so bad.

No memory=possible concussion. Effexor with seizuriffic people like PA totally lowers the threshold. She totally had myoclonus (basically jerkiness of limbs) all over the place and sort of a “reverse myoclonus” where she would fall down. When she drank for sure. Ha! Alcohol can also lower seizure thresholds but PA’s fine with that now.

She also had other major problems and got so fed up she emailed a very renowned neurologist, Dr. Clifford Saper, at Beth Israel, Harvard. Not out of the blue. PA’s got gumption but he had a website years ago where he would answer questions about all things of the brain. It doesn’t exist anymore. So PA wanted to know if Effexor was causing some seizure activity. He said based upon the above and so much more, get your butt to a neurologist! Her then GP (now fondly referred to as Dr. Asshole now, didn’t believe she was having seizures and refused to take her off Effexor.)

Anyway, after the bump on the noggin the CT (which was just some simple pics in a tube) revealed nothing.

So what’s up with the abdominal and all the conflicting information? I’ve looked into it and yes there is some kind of contrast “stuff” but again, I can’t understand why Barium would cause any issue with a CT vs. an X-ray that I’ve already done.

Procedures suck.


  1. sodajerk

    Effexor,my current drug de jour.
    i musta been luckier than you ,side effects wise.

    i was on Seroxat before,that was a bit of a bastid for me.weird how different ones affect us differently.

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  2. Oh yes, absolutely sodajerk! I won’t deny that head meds will affect us all differently. It’s a very strange thing…or not, really. Everyone is different and with the variability of the side effects…it’s a real crap shoot with meds. To be honest, it’s a real pain in the ass a lot of the time.

    I don’t know about you but I’ve spent years trying to “get there” and I’m still working on it. Some people never manage to find the right medication and some people just say forget it all and go off them altogether. I have a friend who did and if you want to read more along those lines, check out “Furious Seasons” on my Blogroll for some interesting discussions. Not anti-med or anti-psychiatry… I mean, he blogrolled me and I’m a total med-head. So no worries there but an interesting blog to read and again, all perespectives welcome?

    I know that I can’t ever be med free, that’s for sure but I’ll never hassle anyone who chooses to make that decision. It’s your body and mind so do with it what you will?

    Wow…I really went off on a tangent there, didn’t I? Well, you’re no stranger to that. You’re a regular reader. But crap. that had nothing to do with my CT but at least something to do with Effexor…erm…sort of…

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  3. I think I might be missing your question somewhere. Don’t doctors almost always use Barium when doing a CT. Or are you saying that you have already had one and do not understand why they are doing another? I am confused.

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  4. He there stranger! Remember me? I am trying to get caught up on blog reading and eventually want to join Dr A’s blogaholic anonymous. :) So much to do – so little time and I’m not even working yet! :)

    I hope all goes well with your CT. I don’t remember what I had to drink for some of the CT’s. A couple of times it must’ve been what you are going to drink and the night I went into the ER really sick I had to drink these two large hideous tasting ice drinks that made me feel queasy with every sip. I think this stuff would light up inside me. Then a couple of CT’s I had an IV with dye and that makes your whole pelvic area really warm. very weird.

    I thought people weren’t supposed to drink when on anti-depressants? I told someone that they shouldn’t. OOPs! :)

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  5. Maybe theyre planning to inject you with barium rather than have you drink it?

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  6. Hi aikaterine, I’ve only had a Barium Swallow X-ray, not a CT. You drink the lovely chalky liquid for that.

    Hey SeaSpray, of course I remember you! Yes, I have a “subscription” to the BA posts and have often thought of joining since I write so many here but I don’t know if I’d fit in there. They might get sick of me rambling my gibberish. Probably best to stay on my own wee blog.

    Anyway, you nailed it–or what I was trying to get out pretty much. I was thinking of the injectable contrast vs. Barium drinking. And again, do they inject Barium? This is yes, another question darkentries. Could be?

    That just sounds a little strange but for a CT maybe it’s different. I know for the X-ray you have to hold it, sip/swallow on command…all of this and that but in any kind of scanner (CT, MRI etc…) you have to remain still so it’s not like I’ll be able to hold the beverage in my hand drinking away during the “photo shoot!”

    Oh well, who knows? I guess I’ll find out tomorrow. I should probably double check where they are in the hospital too since my gastro’s office gave me the directions but maybe they screwed that up as well. It’s a fairly large hospital. PA might get lost and then they get all cranky if you’re late.

    I almost forgot SeaSpray. Basically, no one is supposed to drink on any head meds but if you took an informal survey I’m sure the numbers would astound you as to how many of us actually do! Even if you took a formal survey…again, the proportion might be on the high side? Yes, we’re bad…we all deserve spankings.

    But yes, a lot of drug/alcohol (ab)use going on–for many reasons. Escape, dulling pain, “concurrent disorders” (i.e. addiction as well as mental illness,) not having management of your illness, therefore lacking impulse control, needing social contact due to isolation, missing the feeling of being up so getting a false “high”…wow, I could probably go on for a while but it all comes down to self-medication.

    It can mess up your meds and can lead to more depression so you might end up a mood roller coaster–especially if you don’t have decent meds that already support you and keep you pretty level. It’s not recommended but again, it’s really hard for a lot of us.

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  7. yes they do inject barium for some CT’s. I think sometimes they do it just to get better contrast, other times for particular regions like the vascular system/organs
    I saved you some time and worry and found this: http://www.imaginis.com/ct-scan/contrast.asp
    Pretty clear.

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  8. I thought you only drink barrium (learned something new) but I had to drink mine a hr or 1/2 hr before coming to hospital. 1/2 hr ride over.

    contrast – I drank

    IV DYE they inject at the machine.

    sorry bout typing – wet from pool and typing one hand.

    see WHY I should join bloggers anon? :)

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  9. Thanks darkentries! I was looking into stuff and just gave up on it. Too tired (PA too tired to geek out on medical research-y stuff–oh dear…that’s not a good sign hehe.) And again, I figured I’d just hope for the best that they knew what they were doing. But that is interesting.

    Hey SeaSpray, indeed…good to learn something new every day! Wet from pool? You have a pool?! When can I come see you? PA likes splashing around in peoples’ pools! ;)

    I’d need to buy a new bathing suit probably…might lose mine if I were to go swimming in it now. HA! That’d be amusing…ah, maybe it still fits?

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  10. Anytime PA but please…leave the gourd home.

    Haha! Sorry – couldn’t resist – I know it wasn’t you. :)

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  11. By the Way –

    Love the mp3 of the moment. It kind of reminds me of going to the Greek Orthodox Church with my yaya (grandmother for the non-Greeks) and listening to the liturgy. Well, if you take out the women. But anyway, it’s nice. I stole it.

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  12. Hi SeaSpray, it took me a while to figure out what your “anytime” offer meant as I’ve just only taken my first tea…can not focus well without it (or even with it?) But yes, the pool! I’m not even sure where you live but so far I’ve received four invites to come and meet other Bloggers so it warms the little cockles of my heart…shall you be the fifth?

    Any other takers who want to meet little PA?

    Wow, maybe lots of money and travel time but I certainly have the latter? Especially if I carry it over to next year! And if I’m staying with people–well only the cost for the flight right ;)

    Oh, little presumptuous PA! She pulled that with one Blogger and surprise, surprise…instant invite! Heh. There goes my anonymity with some but well, who cares? What are people going to do? Post it on their blog? And if I come and visit, tit for tat! I’ll fly back over and get you *evil laugh*

    But indeed, I will only bring a gourd if you you will cook it! I’m glad you can appreciate the humour of that post. Some people may not have but whatever, right? I still can’t get over it! Oh well, like I said–we’re all adults here. Or maybe not…I don’t know who reads this blog.

    Hi aikaterine, well I’m glad to keep pleasing you! I also have a Russian Orthodox CD that I should probably throw into iTunes–it’s rather different. And “Lamenta” which is all Easter stuff…Stabat Mater by William Cornysh…anything else? I need to buy more of them. I’m obsessed.

    That was only one part of it, of course. I couldn’t stream the whole thing–long.

    But don’t get too excited. I have a lot of ridiculous things in my collection and I am prone to completely embarrassing myself on my blog so I’ll stream some real doozies–don’t you worry! One popped up yesterday and I’m thinking of it next just for complete comedy and yes, embarrassment. It’s like, the things you listened to when you were young…

    And note to everyone else: I’ll probably repeat some things from YouTubes I’ve posted just because they are favourites. And I’ll probably repeat selections from the same groups because they are favourites. But I’ll try not to do that too closely together.

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  13. I have an album by SPK called Zamia Lehmanni: Songs of Byzantine Flowers, which will rock your socks off.
    Well, maybe not ‘knock’ per se, perhaps more, lull you into a trance and then you might fall over, and your socks will slip a little.

    IF you come to MadBlogCon I you can meet some eurobloggers and intrepid global bloggers too.
    I will have to start working out some details…and do a post about it. etc.

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  14. Hey darkentries, if you feel so inclined you can do your little magic trick like with This Mortal Coil again? Love to have my socks knocked off.

    I still don’t know what the hell this MadBlogCon thing is about as aikaterine mentioned it and I feel totally asleep at the wheel and out of the loop. I’m assuming it’s a convention somewhere or something?

    I’ve only been to one “Con” and it was an anime one (geeky PA alert!)

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  15. ooooh, This Mortal Coil. I do love that cd. I like to listen to it in the bath, with a nice glass of dark red wine. But I lost my CD. So now, I have to sit in the bath with a nice glass of dark red wine and no Mortal Coil. It is very, very sad. You all would cry.

    madblogcon – I travel frequently and I want to get everyone together the next time I am over England way. Although we might need to have two. Madblogcon Canda and Madblogcon Europe.

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  16. Hey aikaterine, I can shoot you the few MP3s that I have if you would like? Not a lot but at least it could get you through your bath? Unless you take very long luxurious ones…then the songs might end too quickly.

    I hate baths by the way…I get so terribly bored so I need to take showers. Unless someone joins me in the bath ;)

    Oh, naughty little PA!

    Somehow I don’t think music in the shower would work well. Or perhaps it might be alright. But a glass of red wine, certainly not *laughing*

    Oh god…need to edit this comment I’m such a space case…you mentioned madblogcon in Canada and Europe. HA! Well, if I were to attend, there goes PA’s anonymity! Either that or I’d have to walk around with a bag over my head or some kind of freaky mask. Actually, I do have this really cool spandex hood from the Fetish Scene years ago…it is so wicked. Between that and my spandex catsuit, I look like a walking shadow. Yes, I could wear that, I suppose. Or maybe that’s silly.

    I could go with a medical mask. But I’m not a doc or a medic or anything. Although I did volunteer in a hospice that required me to glove up and gown up and wear one at times.

    Crap…I’m getting so rambly. I’m tired.

    Okay, second edit. You can come and visit me but my flat/apartment sucks. It’s completely small and I’d have to fumigate it (well, no insects but seriously clean it and organize it because everything is everywhere.) And because it’s so small I can only “entertain” on my bed. I know, how’s that sound? Pretty sexy invitation to people, huh?

    Or we could just book ourselves into a decent hotel–oh shit, that won’t work, I have a cat. Or we can find a pet-friendly hotel! Or maybe I’ll move to a better place by the time you come over. Or maybe I’ll come and see you. Or who knows?

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  17. which CD did you have? There are 3.
    I am the original 4AD fanboy. Don’t get me started.

    Song to the siren: http://youtube.com/watch?v=tuxYIUsKDx0

    Oh, PA, here is where the madblogcon sprang into existence (fully formed, like demon spawn) http://forgettingmyself.wordpress.com/2007/07/14/the-basics/

    If anyone wants, I can upload the TMC albums for a while, but they’re all available via torrent also (if you are some kind of heinous criminal).

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  18. My sister would love you. I could see her sitting on the couch just watching you bounce around the room. She is so laid back. But I digress. Actually, I plan on being in both Canada and Europe next year and was talking about having drinks with some of you guys when I was there. Of course, in your respective countries. So, I would have a hotel. But my room is definitely open if things were to get a little out of hand and we all need a place to crash.

    I am just so curious. And, although there are some things that feel a little odd about actually meeting over a friendly meal, I am not sure that the oddness should override my respect and curiosity. Don’t know how you guys feel about such a thing. But it’s a neat idea. I wonder if this will become the new moral question of the blogging age.

    Should we or should we not meet the anonymous people whom we share some of our most intimate moments and weaknesses with?

    And it is so odd that we can even ask that question. I mean, look at it. 30 years ago that question would have been nonsensical.

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  19. darkentries – I had It’ll End in Tears. I have not heard any of the other ones.

    And I am all over new mp3’s. So if you guys upload them, I will steal them from you. Just tell me where to go. And let me know if you like any of the stuff on my journal. I will upload the albums and send you a link so that you can download them.

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  20. WP ate my last comment that I had spent almost two hours working on darkentries
    and aikaterine ( since you are now here as well.)

    Have edited this comment after a few minutes of thinking…

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  21. Go with you gut. Email it or post it on the ‘for some’ over in my land.

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  22. Thanks aikaterine, I should probably try and get some sleep now but I appreciate you comment and offer of “for some.” Will probably just email you.

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