"In all of living have much fun and laughter. Life is to be enjoyed, not just endured!"
~ Gordon B. Hinckley

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

13 Hours from Now...

In 13 hours from now it will finally be over. My long-anticipated (with much anxiety I might add), possibly miserable and terrifying, very expensive, and hopefully answer-containing esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD, basically an endoscopy) will finally be DONE. 

A month or two ago I wrote a post about being more scared about what they would find in the procedure than going through the procedure itself. 

Well, that's not the case anymore! I'm pretty freaked out! I've read some pretty awful-sounding reports of other patients who woke up choking and gagging, had bad reactions to the medications and had panic attacks or muscle spasms, very painful sore throats lasting for days, very inconsiderate doctors who wouldn't listen to the patient, the 'twilight sedation' (it's supposed to put you in a partly awake state where you obey the doctor's commands but don't remember a thing after) resulting in being completely awake and aware but with subdued reflexes and no ability to respond to or communicate that they were choking on the scope or gagging terribly. Awful stuff. That's not the norm though.

From what I understand anyways, it's a pretty short thing. You go in, they hook you up to an IV and partially sedate you, they spray some really nasty stuff down your throat to numb you and calm down your gag reflex a bit, you lay on your side, they put a white plastic thing in your mouth to hold it open and keep you from biting the scope, and then the doctor pushes a tube with a camera on one end to the back of your throat and tells you to swallow (reportedly the worst part and the most gaggingly part) and then slides it on down inside your esophagus and into your stomach and intestines. Then they look at stuff and take biopsies of the tissue, pull the scope out, and within like 20 minutes you're done. Then you just have to sit around an hour or two until the meds wear off and have someone drive you home. 

Best case scenario: I go in and don't freak out or get sick from nerves, normal stomach random nausea stuff, or the fact that I haven't eaten or drunk anything for the past 12+ hours or that I can't take any meds for nausea. Then they plug me into the IV and I wake up after it's all over and don't remember a thing, don't have a sore throat, don't have stomach distension from having air puffed into my stomach from the procedure, and don't have any nausea or lingering effects from the sedative or procedure. They find the cause of my nausea, prescribe me meds or some sort of treatment to cure it, and I get better and live happily ever after!

Worst case scenario: uh, just use your imagination. I'm terrified about going in feeling sick and having it be worse from being nervous. The partial sedation really scares me too. I woke up a few times while having my wisdom teeth taken out even though I was supposed to be completely sedated, so I don't know what this partial sedation will be like for me. I'm also super scared about having the white thing in my mouth. I hate having things in my mouth making it so I can't close my mouth or swallow or do whatever it is I want to do to feel less nauseous. And having something pressed down into my throat and having to swallow it while hitting my gag reflex when I'm already not feeling good at all...NOT COOL! And there are tons of other things that could go wrong too, and there's always the reasonably good chance that they won't find the cause of my nausea and it will all have been a huge expensive waste of money and an unnecessary toll on my emotional health from worrying. I just really really hope it goes well!

But, even if it's scary and awful, in just 13 hours it will be OVER!!!!!! And me and Trevor found a great deal on a good SLR camera that I want, so we're going to buy it as a reward for getting it done :) And we're going to go to Kneaders for dinner to celebrate! Oh man, I wish I could just fast-forward to after the procedure! But since I can't, I'll just keep reminding myself that I can do hard things! And I'm sooo close to getting through one more!

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