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    Old 04-24-2007, 03:32 PM   #1
    Dizzymoo
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    Terrified, HELP!

    Hiya all,

    i have been suffering from headachs since september 06,anyway today i went to see the neuroglist and he is booking me in for an MRI which im scared stiff about,as im terrified they will find a tumor,but also i am going to have to have something called a lumbar puncture as i could have Idiopathic intracranial hypertension, i have read up on Idiopathic intracranial hypertension and you could go blind! so im panicking..does anybody have or know of Idiopathic intracranial hypertension? has anyone had a lumbar puncture done?? and are MRI scans scary?

     
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    Old 04-24-2007, 07:48 PM   #2
    SuzyQ0928
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Hi,

    I have all those symptoms of intercranial pressure. It's been a tough road for me but you're fortunate that you have a doctor that's willing to search to find out what's wrong with you.

    The lumbar puncture won't be fun, but try to drink lots of fluid's prior to the proceedure. I've had two of them done....the first was in the doctor's office, and didn't go well because I was dehydrated (no one told me to be well hydrated). The second was in the surgical center with an anesthesiologist (sp?) and went like a peice of cake. I'd ask about going with the second route, if I were you. Those anesthesiologist's are wonderful and so knowledgeable about where they can and can't insert a needle to withdraw fluid.

    As far as MRI's go....I've had a ton of them as well. I've always asked for some Xanax beforehand, and they've much better to tolerate. A little scary the first time around, so I understand why you are in a panic.

    You might want to read up on Arnold Chiari Malformation. This disorder causes headaches as one of it's major symptoms. My son and I both have this.

    I wish you the best in your upcoming tests. Please let us know how things go.....

    Hugs,

    Suzy

     
    Old 04-25-2007, 09:11 AM   #3
    Dizzymoo
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SuzyQ0928 View Post
    Hi,

    I have all those symptoms of intercranial pressure. It's been a tough road for me but you're fortunate that you have a doctor that's willing to search to find out what's wrong with you.

    The lumbar puncture won't be fun, but try to drink lots of fluid's prior to the proceedure. I've had two of them done....the first was in the doctor's office, and didn't go well because I was dehydrated (no one told me to be well hydrated). The second was in the surgical center with an anesthesiologist (sp?) and went like a peice of cake. I'd ask about going with the second route, if I were you. Those anesthesiologist's are wonderful and so knowledgeable about where they can and can't insert a needle to withdraw fluid.

    As far as MRI's go....I've had a ton of them as well. I've always asked for some Xanax beforehand, and they've much better to tolerate. A little scary the first time around, so I understand why you are in a panic.

    You might want to read up on Arnold Chiari Malformation. This disorder causes headaches as one of it's major symptoms. My son and I both have this.

    I wish you the best in your upcoming tests. Please let us know how things go.....

    Hugs,

    Suzy


    Im terrified of hospitals, and im just getting over agraphobia so it isnt going to be easy...but i know i have to have these tests... im worried sick about them finding a brain tumor when they do an MRI scan, im also worried sick about the lumbar puncture, as everyone says it hurts so bad, and afterwards they are ill for days also there are alot of risks having it done? so ive heard. it will take upto 8weeks for an appointment for an mri, so i have 8 weeks of anxiousness to try and get through..i just cant relax at all.

     
    Old 04-25-2007, 09:25 AM   #4
    SuzyQ0928
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Goodness, I've suffered from Agoraphobia as well, so I know what you mean by being terrified. It's a shame to have to worry ourselves sick, isn't it? Even if we try not to, we still have that feeling of impending doom.

    Do you have a counselor or psych doctor? If so, you might be able to try some klonapin for just a short time to see you through this.

    Please try to do some deep breathing exercises and some relaxation a few times a day...I know though, that it's easier said than done!!

    I wish you the best in this struggle.

     
    Old 04-25-2007, 12:17 PM   #5
    jaxobean
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    DizzyMoo,
    I know in my area they have new MRI machines that are not so closed in and I guess they are wonderful for people who have claustrophobia. My father tried both kinds because he hated the MRI and he said it was like day and night. Another option is asking your doctor for a valium so that you are more relaxed. I know my doctor has prescribed it for tests that I was nervous about. I have had about 5 MRI's and they do not bother me. The biggest problem really is thinking about them. When I go in- one time was for 1 1/2 hours and I just tried to think about other things. One thing to keep in mind is that nothing is going to hurt you. They usually let you have headphones so you can listen to music but if they need to cover your head area then they will not let you. They send you in a tunnel and all you hear is a series of loud clicking/banging and they talk to you and let you know how long each film is going to take. Just think postive and try and think about something else. Get a script for like 2-3 valium and that helps a lot. Good Luck and try to go to another place in your head...Jaxobean (Nikki)

     
    Old 04-25-2007, 05:18 PM   #6
    Bearygood
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Hi, Dizzy! I can speak to the MRI subject. Let me start by saying that it's not bad at all -- it's just the anxiety! I never considered myself a claustrophobic person and thought I'd be okay but actually wound up backing out when I got in the room for the first time. I couldn't believe it! First, you KNOW nothing bad is going to happen in there -- there's plenty of air to breathe, both sides are open and you're in a hospital (or medical facility)! I felt completely ridiculous! The next day I called my internist and explained what happened. He told me this is not unusual and gave me a prescription for valium. In retrospect, I think part of what freaked me out was the advice (unsolicited!) by a woman who had just finished. She asked me if I'd ever had one before and when I said no, she said that the trick is to close your eyes before they roll you in. So of course, I did exactly the opposite of that! The irony is that she was right, at least for me! Okay, so now I'm 2 MRIs down and 2 more to go. Here's what worked for me and the choices they usually give you. Here's what I found for myself but honest, it's all about figuring out what works for YOU.

    Okay, I found that strong, fierce me does need valium. If you go this route to calm your nerves you'll have to figure out how much you need. (I take one pill about an hour before my appointment and then another half when I hit the waiting room.) I DO close my eyes before they roll me in -- and also ask for prism glasses just in case I feel compelled to peek! (I've only done that right before they rolled me out, just to see. ) My internist told me about them. Most places have them but you have to ask (they didn't offer). They strap it on the apparatus and if you do open your eyes you can see the opening of the tube on both ends (hi feet! ) Just makes you feel less enclosed. Through this process I've also confirmed that I'm a bit of a control freak! It helped me to ask how many pictures they were taking (not how long I'd be in there) -- this way when I heard the clicking and other sounds I knew that there was progress. Me, I opted for no headphones -- again, I found that I need to be present and the sounds kind of help me. I think the valium made me feel they were somewhat meditative! If you want headphones it would probably be okay for you to bring your own CD. You can ask all these things beforehand.

    Hope some of these suggestions help, as does knowing about some of the options you have (glasses, headphones, etc.) Oh -- there are also machines that are a little bigger than others. When you book your appointment tell them it's your first time and see if there's a "better" machine for you. The one I've been in both times is a little bit shorter than other machines they have at the same facility. As for an open MRI, my neurologist said that the pictures wouldn't be as good (the two I've had so far are of the head.)

    In closing, let me also say that I know some people who fall asleep during MRIs. Doesn't bother them ONE bit! My sister actually says she finds it relaxing!

    Good luck, and try not to stress about it, especially so far ahead of time!

     
    Old 04-25-2007, 05:21 PM   #7
    Bearygood
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Two more things -- I also made sure I was well hydrated those days (think I even bought some Gatorade that first time!) and also put chapstick on. It's ALL psychological and at least for me, all these things helped.

     
    Old 04-27-2007, 11:28 AM   #8
    Dizzymoo
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Hiya,i just wanted to let you all know i got my appointment through and it is 10th of may.....i was told it could take upto 9weeks to get an appointment, so im worried now, incase they rushed it cos they think something really bad is wrong with me?? I am also terrified cos i am so sure they will find a tumor..anyway,just thought id let you all know

     
    Old 04-27-2007, 02:10 PM   #9
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Hey Dizzy. DOnt worry hun. Im seeing a Neuro myself (still waiting for appointment) because Im having strange symptoms. I too am worried sick. But try not to worry. I know its easier said than done. MRI's aren't too bad so don't freak out about these. A MRI will show up everything and if something is going on the Neuro wont miss it. I cant comment on the Lumbar because I've never had one but I wish you luck with this and keep us all posted. x

     
    Old 04-27-2007, 08:16 PM   #10
    SuzyQ0928
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Dizzy....I'll keep you in my thoughts as your appointment time comes. I'm happy that you are able to be seen sooner than you thought. Look at it positively if you can, although I know how hard it is.

    On May 9th I'm having Gallbladder surgery, so remember me too if you will. We'll both be thinking of each other and rooting one another on. Okay?

    Sending warms hugs to you Dizzy!

    Suzy

     
    Old 05-01-2007, 10:31 AM   #11
    Wowwwweeee
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    Smile Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Hey Dizzy,

    I also deal with headaches, and balance/dizzy problems (I am usually on the Inner Ear Boards).

    For me, the MRI (I've had two so far) was difficult because you have to lie flat. Lying down flat causes me to "spin" many times, so I was EXTREMELY anxious about having to lie flat and still for so long (about an hour for a complete head scan) knowing that I might feel spinny the whole time.

    I decided to "practice" at home, to get used to the idea of lying flat for a while. So, I would lie down and put a cloth over my eyes and just hang out.

    I agree that it's good to simply lie down and close your eyes as soon as you're settled on the MRI table. This way, you really can't see what's going on around you, which for me, was half the battle, although after the first MRI, I was curious, so I opened my eyes a lot.

    It's really not a scary thing to go through at all, once you make up your mind to have it done. For me, the "clinical" settings of a place can upset me. The MRI is a large noisy machine with the x-ray part in the middle. In order to get a good picture of whatever body part you are having MRI'd, you will be placed in the MRI with that body part closest to the middle of the MRI machine. For your head, you will go in head first, and the majority of your body will be sticking out.

    It's important to lie still so the x-ray (pictures) come out clear and sharp.

    The room is well lit, and even if you are in the MRI head first, there is plenty of light to see, and you are able to easily move if you really had to. The first time I went, I had a family member sit next to me, so they could hold my hand and touch my leg when I felt nervous.

    If you think about it, it's a pretty cool way to take multiple pictures of your brain.

    I'm going to start another reply, to make sure I don't take up typing space and run out of room - hold on!

    Last edited by Wowwwweeee; 05-01-2007 at 10:40 AM.

     
    Old 05-01-2007, 10:39 AM   #12
    Wowwwweeee
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    Smile Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Dizzy,

    Regarding your agoraphobia, most people who deal with some kind of vertigo problem ALSO develop an anxiety disorder -which makes me feel better to know that I am reacting "normally" to something that feels so abnormal. If you think about it, that's a normal reaction to feeling so unlike yourself all of the time. You begin to fear moving altogether because of the fear and scary symptoms/sensations.

    I also dealt with a fear of, oh gee, almost everything, when I first started having imbalance/wooziness.

    Although it probably doesn't help you, it may help you feel a little calmer to know that some of your anxiety is probably a result of the symptoms and sensations that you are currently dealing with. It isn't easy dealing with "head symptoms" (what I call them). If your balance system is off or you have headaches all the time, for whatever reason, EVERYTHING feels wrong. Your body feels awkward and foreign, and it's hard to trust yourself.

    Accept the fact that you are going to have anxiety for now. Sometimes accepting the feelings of anxiety are better then trying to "fight" them. Some days you will feel more anxious than others - that's okay. You know you have anxiety, and that certain thoughts, actions and symptoms will increase your anxious feelings. Anxiety can sometimes be worse than the physical sensations you are trying to deal with, believe me I know!

    As for the brain tumor - it's normal to think along these lines. There are specific signs and symptoms of things like tumors, and your doctor(s) know what to look for upon initial examination to determine if they need to look further at something like that.

    Having your doctor request an MRI does not mean that s/he is thinking "tumor". Your doctor is following protocol, and doing what s/he needs to do to ensure that you are receiving good medical care and that all avenues are being covered. Head symptoms can be caused by other things besides something like a tumor, so an MRI is a great way to rule out other conditions that can cause your symptoms. Your doctor is doing a great job of follow-through, and I would be more concerned if your doctor did not recommend additional testing to try to get to the root of your symptoms.

    You really should pat yourself on the back for pursuing additional testing at this time because I know it's hard for you between having to deal with your symptoms, the worrying of a tumor, and your anxiety. You really are a fighter, and that's a great way to be.

    Remember, even in your anxiety state, you can do it.

    xo

    Last edited by Wowwwweeee; 05-01-2007 at 10:42 AM.

     
    Old 05-02-2007, 07:51 PM   #13
    n9ne
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    I'm might have to get a MRI soon..I'm going to have to find a hospital with a opened MRI machine..theirs no way I can go into a reg one..im closraphobic so...they had to put my dad to sleep when they done his years ago...hope all goes well..keep us posted

     
    Old 05-03-2007, 12:03 AM   #14
    bigstan
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    Hey Dizzy,

    I had an MRI of the brain and neck (cervical) this past December. It was my first. I too have been dealing with the everyday 24/7 headaches, along with continueous ear ringing/hissing, and dizziness. That alone drives me nuts. I was diagnosed with a Pituitary tumor, and c6-7 disc degeneration. They say my tumor is non fuctioning or malignant. I am now working with a neurologists to find out what is going on. I am due for m first Lp puncture next week. It was first going to be done in his office. I refused and forced him to set it up in the radiologists department under fluroscopy. This is the way to go. I'm not looking forward to it but I realize to get better it needs to be done. As far as the MRI it can be a little unsettling. It is very loud even with the earplugs they give you. I was in the tube for just about two hours, because I had both the brain and neck done. They will place a little rubber ball in your hand. If you feel any panic or anxiety, just squeeze the ball. The test will stop and the technician will get you out and give you a breather. They also tell you in minutes how long each scan will be.

    I have a second brain MRI in the month of May to monitor the tumor to see if its enlarged..

    Good Luck

    Last edited by bigstan; 05-03-2007 at 10:02 PM.

     
    Old 05-03-2007, 05:31 AM   #15
    Dizzymoo
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    Re: Terrified, HELP!

    hello all, thank you for all the replys im very greatfull..A week to go untill i have my mri scan,and i am so worried! im more worried about what they will find then the actual scan at the moment . As i know it is going to be something bad...one day i wake up,and decide im going to try and not think about it, but it dosent work and then the next day i wake up and feel sick with fear ..Anyway im just wondering,how long does it take to get your results back from the scan??

    bigstan i hope its good news on your next mri scan, you sound like a very strong person.

    Wowwwweeee thank you for your posts they made me smile, which i havent been doing much of to be honest.

    Last edited by Dizzymoo; 05-03-2007 at 05:33 AM.

     
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