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Warning: Brain MRI for Panic Attack Sufferers.

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Old 10-05-2003, 10:58 PM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2003
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special_ahs HB User
Post Warning: Brain MRI for Panic Attack Sufferers.

I am pretty sure there are some sufferers out there wishing to take a brain MRI, thinking that there is something wrong with their brain. There is nothing wrong with taking a MRI, but I have to warn you that it might be very unpleasant experience for some of you.

I had one today, and it almost killed me. They asked me if was clusterphobic and had any metal objects in my body. My answers were no, so they didn't hesitate to put me in there. Of course, not knowing what to expect, I smiled when they placed me on the table.

The nightmare started when the test finally began.

1) They tied down my head so that I couldn't move a muscle.
2) They place you in this tube where there is another smaller tube for your head. The tube for your head is so small and tight that, you will feel like you are in a mini cuffin.
3) The worst part is the noise. They give you an ear plug in advance, but the noise is so loud an vibrating that it makes your whole body chill. This goes on for about 15 ~ 20 minutes. (VERY VERY STRESSFUL)

I was okay the first 5 minutes, but after that it was hell. The noise, stress, anxiety, feeling trapped,....they drove me crazy and triggered a panic attack. The technician told me that I had to do it all over again if I stop now. Wishing to find out there is nothing wrong with my brain, I stayed in that tube for the next 10 minutes with my heart racing like over 150 bps. It was the most stressful situation I been through in my whole life. Just thinking about it now, still gives me an attack. Luckly, they finish the test right before I had an heart attack and bout to yell out, "I QUIT. I can't take this anymore."

I am not trying to scare anyone, but simply warn people about this exam.

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Old 10-06-2003, 12:35 PM   #2
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MunkyCrazy HB User

Wow, I'm sorry about your experience with the MRI. I was actually very calm when I had my CAT scan and MRI's done.
I think because I was in the hospital, with doctors all around and people watching me it actually stopped the panic because I felt safe.
I got a series of the scans done, then they stopped and injected a dye to contrast it better, then did another series of scans. The only probelm I had were that my elbows hurt because the table was hard. So they put towels under them for me
If you have to get one and you start to panic just think that you're already in the hospital and they're trying to make you better and that you'll be okay.

Old 10-06-2003, 12:43 PM   #3
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worrywort HB Userworrywort HB Userworrywort HB User

Wow, I have never had an mri but I have had a ct scan and those are a little less stressful, I know what you mean...I had a hearing test when I had a physical and they sat me in this little booth and I started freaking out!!! have a good one

Old 10-06-2003, 02:35 PM   #4
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special_ahs HB User

I think getting a MRI done on your elbow is different from getting your brain done.

You are going to feel like you are wearing a motorcycle helmet and only thing that you can see is the glass that are around your head for the next 20 minutes. You have to remember that you are in this long tunnel and the technician is standing outside the room.
Really, I felt like I was buried alive.

Old 10-07-2003, 07:13 AM   #5
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Tigre HB User

I agree that they are a horrible experience. I had a cervical mri and about lost it. I was never claustrophobic before but am now after that. When they decided to do a brain mri i told them i needed to be sedated. So i got a valium 20 min before and they also gave me a blanket and a washcloth to put over my eyes. I was calm until it started and it was like the valium was not even there. The tech was very understanding and helpful and also gave me a panic button to push if i started to not be able to handle it. I barely made it through. But they are very good tests and needed because it does show things that need to be found. I have partial complex seizures (from a head injury) and i also had the dye injected. Come to find out I also have a 5mm by 9mm pineal cyst in my brain and they wouldnt have found it without the test. Even though its a virtual hell for some of us, they are an important factor in finding out important info....just got to bite the bullet and get them done. I have to have them periodically now because of monitoring the growth of the cyst and im definatley not looking forward to the next one but id rather deal with the 20 or so min of hell and find out that the cyst isnt growing than just not knowing, if that made sense.. . Take care


Old 10-07-2003, 07:15 AM   #6
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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cattys HB User

I had a MRI done of my arm and they tied one done to my side then the other I put above my head . It was awfull and very uncomfortable and noisy. It took 30 min. You would think with all the technology today that there would be a more comfortable way to do a MRI.

Old 10-07-2003, 08:03 AM   #7
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Graciecat HB UserGraciecat HB User

There is a thing called an "Open MRI".
You aren't as closed in when having one, but they do take longer to complete.

Old 10-07-2003, 03:55 PM   #8
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MunkyCrazy HB User

Duh it was my brain I had the MRI for. Who gets an MRI for their elbow?? I just said the table made my elbows hurt and that was the only problem I had.
Plus the technician could talk to me through an earpiece they gave me. I thought I'd freak out, but I didn't. The noise, although loud, made me laugh.

Old 10-07-2003, 05:39 PM   #9
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3,587
Jennita HB User

I had one some years ago. I am claustrophobic too; can't stand anything covering my head. But when the tech said I could slide out anytime I wanted to(she showed me how), I felt better about it.

Going inside was weird at first, but knowing I had control eased the feeling and it became very relaxing and the noise wasn't all that unbearable(one time I was at a rock concert with my daughter, in the front, next to a speaker, oh dear God now that was loud!). So I guess it all boils down to me being a control freak. But seriously, it isn't such a bad test and you can rest assured it will show everything in detail...if that test can't find it, you don't have it.

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