Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Nerve Test

Nerve test? Sounds scary eh? Medically known as EMG and NCV tests. I *think* those letters mean Electromagnetic and Nerve Conduction Velocity tests. Oooookay. You woozie yet? Don't worry, no blood or anything gory like that. I was just made to lie down ---quite comfortably, too!--- on my back and then on my tummy while the technician put this instrument that looked like a huge battery with 2 short antennae sticking out on top on certain points on my body.

What the thing does is zap some sort of current and measures how my nerves react, their speed and strength. Or something like that. It was relatively painless, but there were some moments when my arm or my leg would jerk hard enough that I was scared I would involuntarily KICK or slap the technician, hehehe. But she was adept at what she was doing and the session went fine.

After the nerves, it was time to test the muscles. A neurologist came in and STUCK ---yup, you read that right!!!--- this uber-thin NEEDLE into whatever part of mybody that had to be tested! If I were leery of needles, I'd probably have fainted in a dead, heavy heap!

As it was, I concentrated (while doing crosswords, mind you) on where the needle was stuck in and tried to imagine what the monitor of the machine looked like. The needles "read" the muscles and translated the reading into sounds. I could hear the sounds and they were very similar to how our baby's heartbeat sounds when they're still in the womb. If it weren't for the dang needle, it would have been cool!

Now I almost screamed for the doctor to take out her needle when she stuck it into my lower back area. Yes, where my slipped discs were. They had asked me where my herniated discs where, but I told them I couldn't remember if it was the right or left side. All I know is that the discs in question were L-3, L-4 and S-1. That's all I could tell the technician and the doctor.

Well I found out soon enough what SIDE waas affected! Ugh! Curled in a fetal position so that the doctor could insert the needle into my back better, I didn't flinch when I felt the needle. But then I started to feel cold with dread when I *FELT* a wave of pain inch slowly from the middle of my spine towards the right side. I wanted to scream and threaten the doctor that if her sticking the needle into my back made my back hurt all over again, I'd sue her ass off! Grrrr!

But of course I didn't. I had to be still as a mouse otherwise that damn needle might break or hit a nerve or something and I'd be in a worse situation than before. Slightly panicky by now, I tensed up when she put the needle on my left side. Thankfully, the wave of dull pain subsided from my right and just sort of kept at bay on the left side. So yeah, it was my right side that my slipped discs affected. Hmp!

On the way to the office, I kept concentrating on and flexing the muscles in my lower back to see if the pain was completely gone. Just to check, hehehe. Thankfully, everything was fine. Whew!

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