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Old 02-28-2013, 11:22 AM   #1
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Exclamation LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

I will have my LP tomorrow. Thankfully, my sweet hubby has taken the day off to drive me and to stay with me all weekend. He usually has to go in to work on Saturdays and sometimes Sundays as well. I am so blessed that he cares and that he has a position where he can take of if need be.

NOW .... I need any advice you can give and also a major pep talk!

Here is what the nurse told me ahead of time.... Be sure I am well hydrated; Drink only one caffeinated beverage before the procedure, since caffeine can de-hydrate; lie down 12 hrs. after I get back home and drink lots of caffeinated beverages. That was about it. Of course, I will ask more when I get there tomorrow!

Here are my concerns:

We have an hour's drive to and from the doctor's office. I will attempt to put my car seat back completely but I know it won't be 100% flat. We have a 2-story home with no bedrooms downstairs. Hubby has said that he will move a twin bed downstairs into the living room for me. I plan to lie there for the 1st 12 hours and then move upstairs to our bed. Do you think it will be "ok" after 12 hours to go up the stairs and straight to my bed?

Also .... can I have a very thin pillow or do I really have to lie completely flat? Also, what about rolling onto my side, etc.? Can I put a pillow behind my knees to help my back not hurt? Just wondering how specifically FLAT I will have to be?

OH ... I will also be having 15 vials of blood drawn ... glad he is being thorough, but did she REALLY need to tell me that?

THANKS SO MUCH!

Last edited by Whimpurr; 02-28-2013 at 11:23 AM. Reason: add more

 
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Old 02-28-2013, 11:57 AM   #2
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Re: LP tomorrow.... pep-talk please!

The LP headache is the main thing to watch and avoid. When I had my last LP the traffic made the trip home almost 2 hours. I had the seat reclined as fully as I could and I did fine. Were it another hour I would have made a hotel reservation near the hospital.

I think that with your new bed set up downstairs, you should be in good shape. I trust that you will have a toilet near by! When I had my first LP back in 1982 I was required to lie flat without a pillow for 12 hours. It was torture!!! Nowadays things are quite easier and more relaxed. My last one in 2002 had me lie down or to use a recliner with a "full back recline". The recliner was more supportive and more comfortable and I was there for 6 hours and then I went to bed. I had a pillow to use.

I drank my diet Dr. Pepper (my only caffeine) on my way home and some more after I got home- but only a bit as I did not want to have to get up again and again. I had my laptop next to my chair and I had 3-4 favorite movies to watch which allows time to pass!

It sounds like you have your "ducks in order". I know you can get through this and like most "pleasant tests", this too shall become a distant memory!

You want to make sure that if you do get an LP headache that the local ER is aware that you might need a blood patch. I advised my local urgent care at the time and they assured me that it would not be a problem.

I am glad that your husband is going to help out. Physical and emotional support are always good things to have!
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Old 02-28-2013, 12:20 PM   #3
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Re: LP tomorrow.... pep-talk please!

JH, do you mean I should check with my ER before I go or just once I get back home? Now I'm a bit concerned about the magnitude of these headaches! YIKES! I have read that they ease up if you lie back down? Is that right? I sure hope so!!!

*teeth now chattering*

 
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Old 02-28-2013, 12:47 PM   #4
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Re: LP tomorrow.... pep-talk please!

Lay aside your fears. The headaches are not common. Because of where I lived, I wanted to cover all my bases. I could drive 10 minutes for relief or i could drive over an hour....10 minutes is the easy choice! You can discuss the concern with your doctor, but I think that to be well prepared is key.

Lying down allows your body to recover. Your body will replenish the lost fluid. Just a little loss from the LP is enough to throw you off balance or to bring on the headaches. I will tell you that I have NEVER had an LP Headache- not in 1982 and not in 2002.

It sounds like you are prepared for most everything. Make sure that there will be relief available in the OFF-CHANCE that you will need help.
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Old 02-28-2013, 12:52 PM   #5
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Re: LP tomorrow.... pep-talk please!

OK, I feel much better now, lol! Shew! Yea, thankfully we have a brand new hospital nearby that I can be to in probably 15 to 20 minutes tops. Not "planning" on needing it though!

 
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Old 02-28-2013, 09:53 PM   #6
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Whimpurr,
Its not a big deal test...the anxiety of having it is SO MUCH WORSE than the actual test. This coming from me, who was terrified the first time, and actually drove myself the second time and took the bus home because I had no one to drive me home. Ill admit that the fear of the first one actually made me laugh looking back because its over in 20 minutes. My husband went with me the first time, and was actually in the room holding my hand- and because it was soo stupid overall, he refused to go the next time. He did, however drive me back to the hospital to pick up my car 9 hours later when he came home from work

SO, coffee in the am. Go do the test. You wont need a bed downstairs, a couch is fine. You can absolutely get up to go to the bathroom, BUT DO NOT sit propped up on pillows all day. Yes, you can use one in the car on the way home but as soon as you are there, FLAT. Totally flat. No laying on your side- NO pillows behind your knees. FLAT ON YOUR BACK UNLESS YOU GET UP TO PEE.

You wont hurt. You wont be sore. Youll be temped to unload the dishwasher and run upstairs to get something you forgot. NO. Stay flat.

Drink as much caffeine as you want- any kind you want. But stay flat.

6-8 hours is the recommended length of time. Remember, no matter how "fine' you feel, and you will feel fine" stay flat.

Every story of the dreaded headache comes from the woman who got up to a do a quick load of laundry. Ran out to get the kids 6 hours later, because they were only down the street at the bus stop. Dont do it. If there is any purpose for your husband to stay home, its to wait on you hand and foot. And after 8 hours, you can explore getting up. If you want to stay flat for the whole 12, you can- they are telling you that because the longer you stay flat, the less chance of the headache. BUT, really the central spinal fluid is completely equalized in 8 hours...as long as it has equalized, you cant get the headache.

Remember, flat. Hold the book over your head. Do NOT lay on your side to watch TV. No pillows! Not under your neck, not under your legs. Just flat. And, youll be fine..ok??

If you get up too soon, if you get the headache, straight to the ER (in a car, not by ambulance) tell them you had a LP earlier in the day- they know what to do. A blood patch, is your own blood put back into you to equalize the fluid. Instant relief.

And, laugh with us tomorrow night, ok? It will be over so quick, youll realize its all anxiety, not the actual test. But what you are going thru, each and every one of us has experienced...the anxiety seems to come with the test.


Good luck!
Nikki
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Last edited by MSNik; 02-28-2013 at 09:54 PM.

 
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Old 03-01-2013, 06:27 AM   #7
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Thanks SO much, Nikki! Between you, JayHawk and others, you all have me covered and I am so appreciative! Heading out in just a few ... hubby is warming the car ... we have flow snurries here! Oops, did I say that?

 
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Old 03-01-2013, 07:04 AM   #8
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Whimpurr,

Good luck today! Take a break and let us know tomorrow how you got along.
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Old 03-01-2013, 05:30 PM   #9
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Hi Whimpur, just thinking about you and sending you virtual hugs! Hope things went well today, please let us know!
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Old 03-02-2013, 08:41 AM   #10
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Hello! I made it!

The doctor and his nurse were incredible ... so informative, so nice and so caring ... what a huge blessing!

The procedure itself took a bit longer because my fluid was stingy so they had to keep tilting the table more and even had me raise my head a bit to help get it going but eventually he was able to get what he needed

as a side note for some reason when I type from my tablet on this site, my end of sentence punctuation doesn't work properly so bear with me

Anyway, he numbed me twice because I could feel it a bit and when he was having to move his needle to get the fluid to cooperate I felt a bit of twinging but it was tolerable

I was very surprised about the things they told me regarding after care First I was told to stop on the way home and get a bite to eat because they took 15 vials of blood and 3 tablespoons of CSF and being diabetic they didnt want me to get sick So I rode with the car seat all the way back until we parked at Wendy's and then I raise it slightly so I could eat then back down for the ride home

The ride home was fine until the last 4 miles which is the curvy winding road to our home By then I had to pee really badly and that made for an uncomfortable last trek but I survived, lol

The worst part was my bladder issues I was having cramping feelings but right over my bladder which made me very uncomfortable as I tried my best to limit the times I got up to go to the restroom I finally realized that I was having bladder spasms, something I had read about but had never put the feeling together with the term before They were getting worse so I finally decided that HEY I wonder if my Gabapentin would help with these?

I was VERY relieved to read that it would help and then in fact it DID relieve them and I was finally able to get some rest! There is always more that it seems I am having to figure out about this crazy disease but my reading here on HB has helped so much to put so many pieces of the puzzle together

Oh, I never mentioned the things I was surprised about the aftercare, lol sorry Anyway, I was told I could use a pillow, I could lie down on my side or back either choice and could also prop my legs with a pillow if I wanted that the main issue is with standing up and the force of gravity pulling on the entry site

I just played it safe and laid on my back for as long as I could and then later on my side Again the worst symptom other than my stupid bladder spasms was profound weakness when I got up didn't like that feeling at all but thankfully it passed as the day progressed The nurse did tell me I would feel yucky all day and she was right I drank a bit of caffeine but stopped it because of the bladder spasms and just drank water the rest of the day

I stayed in the downstairs bed until about 10 pm then moved upstairs to my own bed Oh how nice to be back in your own bed, lol Got a really good night's sleep thank the Lord and am now just hanging out in bed today just for safe keeping

THanks for all the support my sweet MS friends and please forgive the length and horrible punctuation of this post

Last edited by Whimpurr; 03-02-2013 at 08:46 AM.

 
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Old 03-02-2013, 08:50 AM   #11
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Whimpurr,

Thanks for sharing, especially with the diabetic twist. That is something others with diabetes can take to heart!

I am glad you made it through this ordeal. Congratulations!!!!!
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:05 AM   #12
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Thank YOU, Jayhawk

 
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Old 03-02-2013, 01:53 PM   #13
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Whimpurr,
Thanks for letting us know your story. Im really glad it wasnt the horrible experience you had imagined. I think I had told you, the anxiety of this test is 100x worse than the test itself!

I too, had some bladder issues, probably because I drank about 10 cups of coffee before and after the procedure- and having to keep getting up to pee, was annoying beyond words- but I also managed to do just fine overall.

Im glad you are home and things are going the right direction!

Nikki
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Old 03-02-2013, 02:11 PM   #14
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Re: LP tomorrow... pep-talk please!

Thanks Nikki , I stopped the caffeine early because of my bladder but the water, well you know how quickly that goes through,

 
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