Hello all and welcome to my blog. This is my first time writing on the Wellsphere site, but if you come to my blog at The Lemon~Aid Stand, you will get more history. I was diagnosed with Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis in September 2008.
Yesterday was my fourth MRI. And I must say it gets easier each time. I actually fell asleep during this one, which surprised me because it was so noisy.
When I arrived, I was taken to a changing room, where they had me put on a gown-with the open back. I just imagined myself running around the place with my rear on display for the world, so I asked for additional clothing. Actually I asked for pants, but they gave me a robe which at least covered my backside. You would think that extra clothing would be a given and not something you have to ask for!
This MRI was brain with and without contrast. I was in the tube for about 30 minutes before they pulled me out and gave me the contrast. For those of you who haven't had the contrast, or an MRI, the contrast is injected into your arm. The contrast helps to increase the differences between tissues of the brain so they can see the image more clearly. In this case, it's to see the lesions more clearly. Everytime they do the contrast, I get a metallic taste in my mouth-like I have a coin tucked in there. After the contrast was injected, they put me back in the tube for about 10 more minutes, in which I almost fell asleep again!!
Claustrophobia has never been an extreme issue with me, although I have had some minor issues with it. I used to use tanning beds, and every single time I got into one then pulled the top down, I would start to panic a bit. I always imagined myself in a coffin, being buried alive and unable to get out. But I found that if I close my eyes, take deep breaths, I eventually can relax and work through it. I do the same with the MRI tube. I close my eyes, take a few deep breaths, then I can relax.
The MRI machines have built-ins that help with claustrophobic people. There is a fan that allows a light breeze to blow through the tube, which makes it so it's not so stuffy. They also have a little mirror on a mask type unit that they place above your face. The mirror shows you the outside of the tube, so when you look into it you can see the open room. After I've done my deep breathing, I find I can look around and not panic. I always look in the mirror a bit to see the openness. This helps tremendously.
I should get the results of this MRI in a week or two. The Neurologist is going to compare the images with the last MRI's which were done in August 08. If he finds any improvement, then the Copaxone injections stay. If he finds that the lesions are worse, active, or new lesions, then it's time to change medications. Fingers crossed for good news!!!