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mri scan, please help

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Old 09-06-2005, 04:47 AM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 5
mols HB User
mri scan, please help

hi there
I am due to have my first ever MRI scan next week and i am extremely nervous. It's a brain scan. aswell as being worried about them finding anything i am very claustrophobic and even thinking of going into a 'tunnel' is making me physically sick and stressing me out so much.
I know the only option for me to be able to have this scan is to have some form of sedative or relaxing drug to be used on this one off occassion. the thing is i really don't like the idea of taking an un natural rememdy that will alter my own state of mind. i know it would be best overall for me to take something like valium/diazepam (as suggested by my consultant) but i worry about panicking on a drug as strong as these?
a few months ago a stand in gp offered me a diazepam tablet (i am anxious and this anxiety has stemmed from a numbness and lack of feeling in my arm) i couldn't take the diazepam because i had heard too much about it, mostly negtive. i then went back to my normal gp and told him my anxiety was quite bad aswell as the pain in my arm and about how his stand in gp offered my diazepam and i couldnt take it. i asked him could i have panicked on diazpem if i had have taken it and he said yes i ould have.
now im worried that if i get something to calm me down for my mri scan that i'll panick and there will be no way to get the 'tablet' out of my body.
sounds really weird i know, but i'm just so wary of taking ny un natural remedies that alter my 'normal' frame of mind. i want to be 'myself' minus the stupid nerves throughout the scan so i know MYSELF what's really going on. (if you get me?)
any tips/advice would be greatly appreciated

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Old 09-06-2005, 06:56 AM   #2
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 359
debill HB User
Re: mri scan, please help

Hi Mols,

I have had many MRI scans, one just last week. I too am very clausterphobic. I was scared at first to take anything to relax me but I finally gave in. My Gp gave me a lose dose of ativan to take just 15 minutes before the scan. I have to say it worked really well for me. I was still nervous but they didn't have to pull me out of the machine like before cuz I freaked out.

Most places also give you a head set to listen to music and to drown out some of the noise. They can be pretty loud inside. I also tell the technician after she gets me ready to let my lay there on the table for a couple of minutes with my eyes shut and I try to get very relaxed. Then they move the table inside. I don't open my eyes the whole time I am in there. It makes me feel less closed in. So don't open up your eyes.

I am not big on meds either but if you really want this test to rule things in or out you might have to give in so you can relax.

I didn't feel doped up on a low dose and I am really sensitive to medication.

Don't be to scared. They are not to bad and at least they don't hurt at all.

Good luck and let us know what you decide.


Old 09-06-2005, 02:35 PM   #3
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: santa rosa, california, usa
Posts: 1,976
SRMom HB User
Re: mri scan, please help

Hi mols:

When you are in a high state of anxiety and you take a benzo like valium, or xanax, you don't feel weird or altered, you just feel either normal because the drug brings down your anxiety, or you might feel a little sleepy.

I'm surprised your doctor said you would have panic if you took it...maybe it's because you expressed extra anxiety over the idea of taking this medication. In my opinion, you would feel much better in the MRI scanner if you take this medication, but I'm not a doctor. If you take it, it will be out of your body in about four hours, so you could just keep that in mind.

Good luck!


Last edited by SRMom; 09-06-2005 at 02:37 PM.

Old 09-06-2005, 02:59 PM   #4
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: melbourne, vic, aust
Posts: 7,370
hry33 HB Userhry33 HB User
Re: mri scan, please help

to mols
diazepam doesnt cause panic, it actually is a very good med for stopping panic
do take it , it will help a lot
Life is not a dress rehearsal

Old 09-16-2005, 06:08 AM   #5
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 5
mols HB User
Re: mri scan, please help

hi there
thanks for your comments
surprisingly enough i managed to have the MRI scan done without the need to take diazepam. I went to my gp's the day before the scan and she gave me what i recall 2mgs (the lowest dose) and 3 tablets.
i was able to take a deep breath, listen to music and i just kept my eyes shut. and it wasn't as bad as what i had thought.
the closing of eyes really does help.
now i have to wait until the start of october before i see my consultant again. but is it true that if it was something major/serious that my consultant would have rung me and asked to see me asap as i was quite surprised that the lady who carried out the scan told me she was unable to comment on anything she seen? i just can't stop worrying

Last edited by mols; 09-16-2005 at 06:09 AM.

Old 09-16-2005, 09:02 AM   #6
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: santa rosa, california, usa
Posts: 1,976
SRMom HB User
Re: mri scan, please help

Yes, anything abnormal and they would call your doctor immediately, and then your doctor would call you. Normal tests results keep us waiting and so anxiety builds. This usually happens every time I get a mammogram, but I've had two abnormal mammos and they called me right away (turned out to be fibroids). Try to put your mind at ease...I'm sure you're fine. What did you have the MRI for?

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