Thursday, March 29, 2012

Bone Scan

My first test was scheduled for the day after I first met my team. It was a bone scan - my very first nuclear test. My mother had had several scans using nuclear isotopes during the period of her life when she had non-Hodgkins lymphoma (she's been in remission for over 2 years), so I was able to grill her regarding her experience. Mine was only slightly different - I was allowed to leave the hospital during the waiting period.

The injection was tiny and not painful. The technician had cleverly hidden the larger lead container for storing the syringe (where it is kept to reduce exposure of the operators) behind himself, so I only saw the smaller lead encased syringe. Once the injection was done, a quick scan in the machine was done to observe the spread of the nuclear material through my blood. I was a little surprised at how close the top plate of the machine was brought to my face.

Next, the two hour wait. My husband and I went across the street to the ELLICSR Centre to relax. It's quite nice there - I'll write about it more in another entry. After two hours of reading in their comfy chairs we headed back to Mt. Sinai to finish the scans. These scans took longer and my back actually started to hurt from laying in the same position for so long. I got a break between each scan which I used to go to the washroom and to get help adjusting the cushions on the table to get more comfortable.

Test Ratings
Time Required [short, medium, long]:  long (3-4 hours)
Pain Factor [0-10]:  1 (almost no pain, just a little needle)
Comfort Factor [0-10]:  6 (comfortable once you get sorted, but there isn't much opportunity for adjustments)

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