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[personal profile] cassy_g
So, just to catch you all up on current events, I had a very hard time with my lumbar puncture on Monday. In fact, I have decided that Physician Assistants shouldn't be allowed near patients... EVER.

I had a PA doing the lumbar puncture, who neglected to tell me they might hit some nerves during the course of placing the needle in my spine. When that happens, it feels like electric shocks going from the spine along that series of nerves - which I assure you is less than pleasant. Still after 4 or 5 of those, I was still managing to hang in there "while he repositioned the needle" for the millionth time. Then, he hit a bone. At that point I felt nauseous beyond belief, and the world started to go black. I don't think I actually passed out, but I might have. Now fifteen minutes later, he finally got it where it was suppose to be, and then I couldn't feel it at all. It took another 10 minutes for them to take the three vials of spinal fluid then needed, but that wasn't so horrible.

Then they sent me back to the outpatient room where I had to lay flat for a few hours. When they let me go home, they said I had to lay flat on my back (except when eating or going to the bathroom) and drink lots of fluids for the next twenty-four hours. Which I did (I was really very good!)

About two hours after I got home, I developed a spinal headache, which sometimes happens they said, and I couldn't take anything for it! It was suppose to go away by the next morning, but by Tuesday evening, I was still unable to sit up without having a seriously blinding headache. I called my doctor's office, and they said to stay flat for another day and drink gatorade, and rest, but if it was still there Wednesday, or I started to throw up, I had to go to the ER.

Wednesday morning I tried to get up and get ready for my Visual Evoked Potential test, and was barely able to stand, and still was having that blinding pain in my head when I was anything other than completely horizontal. Persistent wench that I am, I was determined to go and have the test done, but by the time I got to the hospital, I was vomiting and close to being unconscious. Needless to say, I missed my test because I was taken straight to the ER.

As it turns out, I was leaking spinal fluid from the puncture they made on Monday, which was causing my spinal/cranial cavity to loose pressure when I sat up, and hence the blinding pain. They sent me to the OR where they did what's called a blood patch on my spine. Basically, they draw blood from you, and inject it into your spine where you had the lumbar puncture, and it clots and seals up the hole, and allows your fluids to build back up and the internal pressure to be restored. An anesthesiologist did the proceedure, and I told him if I ever have to have another lumbar puncture he has to do it, because I didn't feel anything at all!

I still had to lay on my back for several hours after they did the proceedure, but now I am feeling SO much better! I couldn’t believe something so simple could fix something that felt so awful so quickly! As it is, I now have to take it very easy for the next two weeks, I can't lift things or strain because there's the possibility of dislodging the patch they made which would then cause me to relapse and have another spinal headache.

Now, I just have some soreness in my lower back where they did the puncture and the patch, but the doctor wrote me a prescription for percocet, just in case.

I still have to reschedule my VEP, but that shouldn't be such a big deal. In any case, now I am home, safe and actually sound!

Date: 2007-08-09 06:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
wooo that sounds amazingly exhausting :Hugs::

Date: 2007-08-10 07:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It was definitely tiring, and as always incredibly bad timing!


Date: 2007-08-10 12:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Wow, that sounds excruciating! I'm so glad it has been fixed. Now let's hope the results show something definitive...

Date: 2007-08-10 07:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I just hope I never have to have another lumbar puncture again! It was actually worse than having a baby!

Now, like you said, hopefully, it will tell them what they need to know. :)

Date: 2007-08-10 01:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
When I had Autumn, my second kiddo, I had to have a C-section. The guy doing the epidural was NEW and it took him 13 tries. At the 13th try, my husband and obsectrician had such a fit that they got the head guy down there who got it in one. I also had spinal leakage and everything. I couldn't sit up to feed the baby or anything. They finally had to do a blood patch but it caused another leak spot so I ended up on bedrest for 2 weeks.
I still have nerve twinges and lower back pain. When they told me I would have to have a c with the 3rd child I just cried!!!!
I feel for you honey!!!!!

Date: 2007-08-10 07:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
ZOMG! I didn't realize you had an LJ! Not to mention I didn't know you had TWO babies!?

3rd?! On the way, or was that speculative that you would need a c-section should you have another baby??

I am so sorry to hear about the problems with your epidural! I wouldn't wish a spinal headache on my worst enemy. It was seriously the most painful thing I have ever felt - EVER.

How the heck are you!? Where are you living now? EMAIL me! cassygordon at gmail dot com. :D
(deleted comment)

Date: 2007-08-10 07:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I am so glad you didn't have it done then! So far my experiences with PAs are leaving me less than impressed.

He seemed like a nice enough fellow, but ARGH! practice on a cadaver or something!

Date: 2007-08-10 06:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
why not just get an MRI? It would have saved a lot of pain on your part.

Date: 2007-08-10 07:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I did have an MRI with and without contrast. He said it seemed "ok" but that it didn't mean I didn't have MS, hence why I had the lumbar puncture, and why I am having a visual evoked potential next week.

He said sometimes the scarring is on the spine? and so it wouldn't show on the MRI.

In any case, I hope I never have another LP again! YUCK!

Date: 2007-08-10 10:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yes, sometimes scarring appears on the spine but they can do an MRI of your spine. I would think the LP would be too evasive a procedure when he could have done the MRI of the spine instead of putting you through something like that.

Date: 2007-08-11 02:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
OMFG, Cassy. I'm so sorry that you had to go through all of that. When I had th c-section with Eleanor, the anestesiologist (or however you spell it) got my epidural in one shot, but I think he'd been doing it a while. It was a scary feeling though, not being able to feel anything from my arms down. And that shivery shocky feeling when it goes in...... yuaaauuuckkk.

*Giant, enormous, gentle hugs to you*

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