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So, the chronic pain in my neck (literal, not figurative) reacted well to the first two injection series.  They put long needles in my neck and injected medicine directly onto the nerves to numb them, okay fine.  The first two were more or less diagnostic in nature, to see if the nerves were effectively numbed. 

The next step in pain management was something called 'Radio Frequency Treatment.'  Which sounds rather benign, it isn't. Well, actually, I reacted more to the IV medications than the treatment itself.  But the description of the treatment is so ludicrous, I have to share it.  They start by giving me a local, but only on the surface of the neck so that I will be able to communicate  with them and can feel all the lovely things they are doing to my nerves. 

Right, okay, then they shove long needles in from the side AND back of my neck (the previous treatments only involved the needles from the side).  Then the nurse says she is going to affix something to my leg...my leg?  Why, I ask.  Her answer, "To ground you."  Ground me?  Why do I need to be grounded? They've already given me one IV pain injection, just because. 

Okay, the needles are in my neck, what's next?  Electrical stimulation you say?  Well, that sounds delightful. They then, one nerve at a time, (they are going to do three total), 'subject' the nerves to mild electrical impulses, to make sure they are on the right nerve.  After making sure they are only stimulating the intended nerve, they then ramp up the intensity and pulses to make sure they aren't effecting a nerve which goes down my arm, etc.  After they've made all their tests and determinations, it's time for the radio frequency bit to take place. 
The aim of the RF part is to, by using radio waves, make 'heat lesions' on the nerve to numb it.  'Heat lesions'?  Sounds to me as if they are going to be burning my nerves???  Well, anyway, the radio bit is the easiest part of the procedure. 

The first two nerves go easily and according to plan.  The third nerve is not going to play along like a nice nerve.  The first electrical impulse he shoots into the nerve feels as if I was struck by lightning up the back of my skull.  At which point I say something profound like, "Ow, ow, ow, ow, ow, ow!"  The nurse approaches and says something about more IV pain meds, but I'm too distracted by the sensation of the back of my head trying to depart my body to give it much attention.  The doctor says something comforting like, "Well, we'll back off that a bit."  Yeah, thanks Doc.  He twiddles the needles around a bit and electrocutes me again, luckily this time the electricity didn't go shooting up the back of my head.  This time it went down my jawline.  Not fun, but better than the previous attempt.  Finally they get the wily nerve tracked down and go about causing 'heat lesions' on the nerve, and I'm done.  Time to get me up and moving.  This is where things got interesting.  I've been made rather nauseous by the IV medications and I'm dizzy.  They begin to explain the dizziness is to be expected as my body adjusts to the new equilibrium created by the deadened nerves, but that should get better in the next couple of WEEKS.

So, they trot me across the hall to the recovery room.  Well, since they insist this is an out patient procedure, they seat me in a reclining chair rather than a proper bed.  Well,  I sat there in misery, I actually broke into tears, it was not fun.  They kept an eye on me for over an hour, gave me anti quesiness medicine and finally after I said, "I just want to go home" for the bajillionth time, they finally released me.  I rode home in the back seat, not fun since it takes an hour to get to our house from the medical dungeon.  Upon reaching the house, I collapsed in the bed and stayed put for the rest of the day.

Okay, now, before all this happened, which was Monday, we got to go on another mini-holiday to the Seattle Tacoma area (those who are part of the 100_snapshots  community have seen some of the photos from that trip), where I spend the day taking photos and the evenings hanging out with family.  Nice, huh?  The hubs left the day before I did, so I'm sitting around here the evening I had the house to myself, after sending the hubs off that morning.  So, tra la la, I'm just doing not much, of anything.  Suddenly I notice a little something has gone missing.  The central diamond in my wedding set has gone walkabout.  Well, damn!  So I spend the next few hours scouring the house, my chair, Fergus fur, inside my purse, etc. etc. for the missing rock.  It's amazing how large my house suddenly became, also discovering the plethora of items gathered on my floor which are small and shiny but not diamonds.  It still hasn't returned.

For some reason, unknown to my conscious mind, I'm constantly listening to my Jesus Christ Superstar CD's, both the original brown discs and the 1973 movie soundtrack.  I'm listening to it as I type.  It's beginning to worry me, I'm not listening to anything else.  I hear it in my sleep and as I'm waking up in the morning.

Back to the photo taking.  I took very many 35mm photos while in Seattle and the first roll was taken at the Pike Place Public Market, a famous place here.  Anyway, the first few frames were a bit problematic (I forgot I had taken the lens off and hit the shutter button, so, yeah a bit exposed.  Anyway, here's the magic bit.  I scanned the negatives (I don't get prints, I'd be overwhelmed if I printed everything I shot) and they didn't look encouraging...at all.


It's kind of hard to see, but these two photos are actually two separate frames divided into two frames.

So, years ago, I bought this fancy schmancy scanner to scan my Grandparents slides.  It's a great thing, but I haven't really experimented with it.  I left the negatives in the holder in the scanner and decided it was time to test the scanner out.  On the front of which there is a sticker proudly proclaiming it has "Digital ICE Technology"  I have no idea what that means, technically, but I think it is secret code for magic freakin' button.  I scanned the negatives again after pushing the color restoration button and the "Digital ICE" button and look what it did to those two frames (mostly in making the photo split into two different frames one photo as it should be.)

TA DA!!!!! Magic, I tell you, magic.

If you are still reading, thank you, you are a trooper!!!  I'm done ranting now, thanks for 'listening.'

Most happy update!! I was walking from my den to the kitchen, I saw something shiny on the floor out of the corner of my eye!!! It is my diamond!!!!!  I found it!!!!!!!


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 19th, 2009 05:44 pm (UTC)

I'm so sorry about the horrible procedure, and your diamond too - hope it turns up. :::gentle, non-neck-misaligning hugs:::

That is an excellent result from the scanner/digital ICE (whatever the heck that is).

Mar. 19th, 2009 06:44 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the lovely hugs. The procedure actually seems to have helped, I am just having to get used to the dizziness, which should clear up soon.

I FOUND my diamond five minutes ago, but have restrained from doing a vigorous victory dance.
Mar. 19th, 2009 08:43 pm (UTC)
Hooray! That's a bit of good luck :)
Mar. 19th, 2009 06:11 pm (UTC)
Dude. I am so not convinced that electrocution constitutes therapy. And pain meds that make you vomit and pass out are the WRONG meds. Period. I do hope you feel better soon and that it doesn't take you weeks to get your equilibrium back. Good grief.

Oh, no! That is horrible about your ring. Was the diamond, by any remarkable chance, insured?

Hey! Look at that! Love the magic machine!
Mar. 19th, 2009 06:47 pm (UTC)
Thanks! The therapy does seem to have helped somewhat. The thing about the meds, I have a list of 'reaction' medicines and they still gave me a double dose IV, stupid people.

The diamond just showed up a few minutes ago!! YAY!!!!!!

I am now having the urge to scan all my negatives, and I probably will, eventually.
Mar. 19th, 2009 06:56 pm (UTC)
Yay! I'm so glad you found it!!!

Do you have any idea what meds they gave you?

The one and only time I took Vicodin, I woke up on the family room floor propped up by my mother as I puked into a garbage can that she'd put in front of my face. Because of that reaction, I'm terrified of ever really needing a strong pain med.
Mar. 20th, 2009 01:40 am (UTC)
I'm not sure what they gave me, but I had a very similar reaction to the Vicodin once, horrid stuff. Whatever it was, I'm sure it's been added to the 'do NOT give this woman this stuff it makes her sick' list.
Mar. 20th, 2009 01:50 am (UTC)
Unfortunately, docs rarely ask "Why are you intolerant to Vicodin." Most likely, it's the codeine that you are intolerant to, which would make you intolerant to Tylenol #3, Vicodin, morphine, and just about anything beginning in "hydro" (hydrocodone, hydromorphone, etc.). But that logic can't be found by reading your chart, so you get to vomit and pass out each time they give you one of these lovely favorites.
Mar. 29th, 2009 05:36 pm (UTC)
Stupid doctors, that sounds like as good a theory as any. At least I'm finally getting over the procedure and I hate to admit, but the chronic neck pain does seem to have abated somewhat.
Mar. 29th, 2009 05:41 pm (UTC)
Hey, I hope it goes away completely! I want this idiot procedure to have been extraordinarily helpful to you in the long run!!!
Mar. 29th, 2009 05:42 pm (UTC)
Let's keep our fingers crossed.
Mar. 19th, 2009 08:32 pm (UTC)
Yippee for found diamonds - you will be very surprised to hear that one of the claws on a diamond in my engagement ring was catching on things a couple of months ago and I had to take it off immediately and put it in my purse, because i was afraid I would lose one of the diamonds! Alas, the jeweller didn't think it was suitable for building up and he is currently building me a whole new setting for the stones - expensive but at least I will be able to wear it and relax!
Sorry to hear about the ouchy treatment and it's good to hear that you think it is helping a little. I do hope it continues to improve over the next couple of weeks. Do take care of yourself!
And how clever that little bit of kit is!
Mar. 20th, 2009 01:46 am (UTC)
I love my magic 'ICE Technology' I'm even considering rescanning all my negatives and slides (now that I bought a second external hard drive.)
The treatments did help, I'm still adjusting to the equilibrium and scratching my neck and only feeling it slightly (very odd sensation).
G and I are fairly sure they are going to have to do some serious rebuilding of my diamond prongs, but I am SOOO happy I found it. G and I have been scouring the trash (burning and sifting through the ashes) and all sorts of stuff in an effort to find it. He said, this is all well and good, but the way it will show up is you'll catch it out of the corner of your eye, and he was right.
Thanks for the well wishes!
Mar. 22nd, 2009 06:43 pm (UTC)
Eep! Needles and lectrickery sound more like medieval torture than proper medicalness to me :-(. I hope it'll prove to be worth it.
Mar. 26th, 2009 06:59 pm (UTC)
It had a very medieval feel to it. But I do think it's beginning to have a positive effect. Thanks goodness.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )


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