Thursday, November 13, 2014

Liver Biopsy Stuff

Because you need to know.

What its REALLY like to have a nine inch, hollowed out needle pierced through your back and into your liver... #heaven. 

I'm still high on drugs from the procedure obviously.

Actually- let me tell you, I had it in my head to be death.  Like I was going to die.  Wrote my kids notes, said my "love yous," looked at old photos, the works.  I was going to die during my liver biopsy.

Over 24 hours since the procedure and I'm still kickin.  YESSSSSSSSS.

So Ryan dropped me off super early for the procedure and I had to do all this junk beforehand to prove my blood could clot. 

The procedure was supposed to be ultrasound guided, and at 8:30 AM.  So when it was 9:30, and I was still in the holding room, trying to understand how they were going to do this whole thing while I was in a CT machine.... um, one could say I was nervous.

The doctor had looked at my previous images and thought it'd be better in a CT scanner.  Ugh.  I was not prepared for a CT guided liver biopsy.  It was supposed to be at 8:30, I was supposed to be in a nice twilight sleep, in a dark room with an ultrasound.  Plans were changing. And I am not a plan changer.

I started to panic and my heart rate went up which happens every.single.time.  But it made my vitals go nuts which delayed the actual event even longer.  I was telling the nurse, "This is all because I'm consciously aware that I'm going to die.  If you knock me out, my vitals will go back to normal- bet you anything."

She asked, "Are you THAT afraid of having this done?"

And I wanted to say, "Are you THAT serious?"  I mean giant needle.  Ribs.  Liver.  No.

But she talked me down a little bit and was able to get me to at least stop crying long enough to sign my life away 3000 times.

And then she swung my door open and said, "SHOWTIME!"  And I was confused again- are we going to get some ice cream?  Or am I going to get my liver pierced?

They wheeled me into the CT room which had transformed into an operating room- basically, just lots of people and blue sterile stuff, which I was good with.

And now I'll tell you the most uncomfortable part of this entire thing:  getting into the right position.  Holy. 

I ended up with wedges and pillows all over the place and my right butt cheek high in the air, with my left shoulder blade on the table.  I had an IV, o2 stat thingy and a blood cuff monitor- they had me lift my arms up over my head.  I mean, seriously?

Once I was in position, the kindest, best doctor (aside from Dr. Bigelow) popped his face into my peripheral.  "Hey young lady!  I have a daughter your age and I can't imagine her being here. She'd be terrified.  So that means I've gotta be extra good with you." 

Immediately I breathed.  And cried (of course).  Because compassion and empathy doesn't come cheap or easily these days.  Trust me- I know this.

Okay now I'm going to narrate my twilight sleep (as I remember it):
Me:  You have to give me something soon.  Like can you put me to sleep?  I'm going to lose it any second.
Doctor:  No, I want to talk to you.  We're going to keep you up.  So where are you from Ashley?
Me:  Here.  I mean St. Augustine.
Doctor:  No way!  Nobody is from St. Augustine.  That's for tourists only.
Me:  OW.  Ow.  I feel that.  Yeah I feel that.  Okay give me something please.  
Doctor:  You're doing so good. And I really want to know about how you came from St. Augustine but lived in Michigan.  I was reading your records.
Me:  (((literally no idea..... just minutes of blabber- twilight sleep had kicked in))) and I ate bacon yesterday and I used to drink tequila but not enough to hurt my liver.  I love plaid and I'm excited for fall, and I do oils.  Yeah, DO oils.  I DO OILS!!  For my job.  But I'm a mom too and I have four kids and we ate bacon the other day.

(And then a giant pinch and sound to accompany it)

Me: FU*&!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  What was that?
Doctor:  That was me getting the biopsy. You okay?
Me:  MMhmm. I have four kids and drink tequila only when I go out which is like once a year.   HOLY (expletives) this hurts.  It's in my back.  Whatever you're doing is in my back.  IN MY BACK.

Doctor:  You're bleeding, that's what you're feeling- the pressure from the blood.
Me: OH DEAR GOD.  OH DEAR GOD.  Can you give me something?  I need something. 
Doctor:  So how are those kids?
Me:  There are four of them.... and God... this is really bad.  But I have four kids.
Doctor:  The doctor over there tells me he needs more so this next pinch is because of him not me.

(Another giant pinch/clamping sound)

Me:  OH MY GODDDDDDDDD.  I feel this.  I feel it.  I feel it all. 

Doctor:  You should only be feeling pressure, right?
Me:  Yeah pressure.  Lots of pressure.  But I don't like it.  Can you give me something?
Doctor: I'm sealing it up with some clotting gel.
Me:  Am I bleeding bad?
Doctor:  I'm making extra sure you're not.  That's what this gel is for.
Me:  Is it toxic?  I'm trying to detox.  Can you give me something?

Doctor:  Your body will absorb it.
Me: Okay.  Because I have four kids.  They should've passed that pot law.  Because they keep giving me medicine that could be fixed with just one hit, ya know?

Doctor:  OKAY Ashley, you are DONE. 

-and I honestly can't remember anything else....

UNTIL- my nurse came in and said, "ASHLEY, its time to move!"

(I am so lazy... especially when you load me up with narcotics).

I told her I would.  She came back and I hadn't moved and she said, "I'm going to have to help dress you now, is that okay?"

I promised her I'd move again. 

I didn't move an inch.

But Ryan was back by then and he promised to get me going.

And then I sat staring into oblivion until I woke up this morning.

Seriously- the trippiest day of my life.

Questions  I want to strive to answer with this post:
-Was it really THAT bad?-  no
-Did it hurt? - yes, there were times.  But nothing worse than  shots.
-How was twilight sleep?-  very good.

Thank you guys for all the thoughts and prayers :)

We should know something about the mass by tomorrow.

I'll keep you updated. 

Love to you all!

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