Aug 23, 2011
Since having my gall bladder removed last year, I’ve had this nagging pain in my right side rib cage area. It’s a consistent dull pain which I was told should go away a couple of months after my surgery. Well it hasn’t and after an ultrasound and an endoscopy (tube down the throat), it was time to pull out the big gun. Today I had an MRI and it was not fun.
MRI stands for magnetic resonance imaging and to be honest, I don’t know how it works. I just know that it’s one of the best ways to look inside the human body without having surgery. If you’ve never had an MRI, it can be a bit of an experience. The machine is rather large and circular in shape. If you look at the picture I included, you can see what it looks like. Now you see that tiny little donut hole in the center? That’s where you go in! Yep, they stick you in that hole to be able to scan the body parts they need. At 6’4″ and 235lbs, I’m a pretty big guy so being squeezed into that little orifice was, how should I say, THE SUCK!
As they slide you into this tube feet first, you have two choices. You can either put your hands behind you (like you’re raising both hands) or you can put them at your side. I chose the latter because it was just more comfortable, especially because I had an IV in my arm. The dude then covered my eyes with a small towel and slapped some headphones on my ears so I could listen to music. As I’m being pushed in, I could see slightly from under the towel and that’s when it hit me that I was INSIDE THIS INSANELY TIGHT, SMALL TUBE WITH NO ABILITY TO MOVE!!
Now, I’m by no means claustrophobic but being in there made me feel like I was in a coffin and it was the creepiest feeling ever. For about 30 seconds, I considered asking them to pull me out but I composed myself, closed my eyes and focused on the music. From there things went fairly smoothly until about 10 minutes before the end of the procedure at which point, it started getting incredibly warm. I had an imaging device sitting on top of my chest and every time they used it, I could feel the heat on my chest. Couple that with the blankets they placed on me and I was a little more than toasty. :P
Would I do this again? Hell yes! The alternative to this is to have someone cut me open and poke around. As a general rule, I try to avoid having sharp instruments opening me up so while being confined truly sucked, the alternative is far worse. Hopefully, they’ll be able to figure out what’s causing the pain and I can plan out my next steps.