Halloween morning I was scheduled for a Gastric Emptying Scan to see if my stomach is also involved in my GI issues. I can hear the question all ready…”why did it take so long”?
Like so many with chronic conditions/illnesses, we are dealing with a number of disorders/syndromes that have a lot of overlapping symptoms. In my case, the precursor was fissure trouble from a very young age. These fissures were just the beginning of a long, hard path of acquiring diagnosis after diagnosis. Strewn with procedures, further testing and surgeries.
This latest step is a “gift” from my current pain pump. My GI Specialist would not have ordered today’s scan without my being able to specifically describe my continued GI issues with him. This ability to determine (or better word — guesstimate) what condition/illness is the forerunner led to my realization that there is something going on that has not been addressed! These continued issues of bloating, stomach pain, abdominal cramps were subtly different. It was almost camouflaging itself as an IBS flare…yet, again…there was a nagging difference.
Fast forward to this morning’s scan. This test was quite different from others in the past. No clothing had to be removed…would have been able to keep my coat on if I felt more comfortable in it! It started with eating some “radioactive” eggs. By the second bite, my body remembered that taste…albeit in a different format — thick shake and also a more liquid variation.
I remember looking at the bowl, afraid that I would not be able to eat it all. I asked the technician how much was necessary for the scan. His response was a few more bites. Yeah!! I managed to get enough down to head into another room for the scan.
Lying flat on the table, arms close to my sides, I was slid into position. A boxlike piece was then lowered (which required some self talk to calm my PTSD). The images were gathered in minutes. I didn’t have to hold my breath or alter it in any way!
This scan process was performed roughly every 50 minutes. So in between scans, I was wheeled back out to the waiting room (thankful that I had my comfy wheelchair)! It can take up to 4 scans…thankfully, I only required 3!
The hardest part of this scan was not being able to take the oral pain med. Thankfully my pain pump was doing its job! Would have never made it through this without it.