One Piece Of Advice For Your First MRIPosted: October 19, 2011
I talked to a few people. I heard things. People told me that they were noisy. They said that I would not like being in that confined space. Then I went to see if those things were true.
I had my first MRI.
I know I did a post about visiting my doctor. And then I did a post featuring some x-rays of part of my spine. Now, I show up with a post about me having an MRI.
I recognize there is a pattern in that. But I’m not dying or anything. My doctor decided to send me for an MRI to get a better look at a pinched nerve.
Hi, Are You Claustrophobic?
My visit to the MRI room at the local hospital began when a woman called me to schedule the event. She asked me to confirm my full name and birth date. I suppose it was important to do that to ensure that she had not accidentally dialed a professional Omawarisan impersonator. I resisted the urge to ask for the same information since I couldn’t be sure she was actually from the hospital and not some scheduling woman impersonator. We eventually got past the introductory phase and agreed on when I was to appear for the blessed event.
Then came the big question – are you claustrophobic? I said I wasn’t. Because I am not.
Word on the street is that people who say yes get Valium to cool them out. I said I wasn’t. Because I am not.
I walked back to the MRI room with a technician. I wasn’t allowed to bring anything that contained metal into the room with the machine. Everything I had on me went into a locker that she gave me the key to. MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Apparently that means there is a major league magnet involved. I’d have thought metal would be fun, but that’s why I don’t work there.
We went into the MRI chamber, she closed a very heavy door and cranked a lever to secure it. I know that part sounds a little exaggerated. It isn’t. It was like going into a vault. Then she took my locker key and hung it on a hook inside the room. “No one is coming in here but you and me” she said.
It has been my experience that many hostage situations start with a door being secured and someone saying “no one is coming in here but you and me”.
Instead of menacing me, my captor showed me the MRI machine. It had a big hole in it where my body was going to go into it. “No problem”, I told myself, “all sorts of room in there”. I was given headphones so I could listen to music and then the table I was on started to slide into the machine.
What’s The Rush?
The machine started moving me into the hole. The song “Tom Sawyer” by Rush was playing on the headphones. I was singing along with Geddy Lee in my head and trying to figure out what we were singing about when suddenly I thought “oh, this is narrow”.
That wasn’t part of the song. The tube part of the MRI looks huge…until you’re in it. It is narrow. It is loud, until they turn it on and it gets really loud. It made me reconsider my answer to the claustrophobia question. It made me think about all sorts of things.
Things like how I couldn’t see out of the tube.
And I’d never know if they left the room and went into my locker.
And how if someone did come in the room and take hostages I’d lie there for hours with a giant magnet spinning over me. I wouldn’t even be able to hear what was going on.
And what if they just left? What if the tech got mad and quit in the middle of my scan?
Fire. Fire would be bad. Would they remember I was in here, or would it be every technician for his or herself?
I Become A Man With A Mission
I was able to get myself together. I went to my happy place, calmed down and started thinking about other stuff.
Stuff like why Bon Jovi was playing in my headphones when I specifically said I wanted to listen to rock music.
And how if this really worked because a giant magnet was whirling around me, the best thing to sneak in with me next time would be a little metal car.
And how if I got out of the MRI, the fire, and the hostage situation, I now understood my life’s mission. I want make sure everyone knows the correct answer to the claustrophobia question.
Friends, I’d like you to understand that the answer to the question is yes. Yes, you are claustrophobic. Yes, you will require medication. Yes, you will get someone to drive you home.
Take the pill.