This Friday night did not go as planned.
Last night, I was contemplating on going to this event. The event was a 90210 theme party for a huge national charity and they secured a headliner to do the show. I was looking forward to “potentially” going (because everything with me is “potential”) and also because 90210 was my favourite show ever. To make a long story short, I didn’t go. Because I went somewhere else.
Me: Hey I am going to the ER.
Husband: Really? That’s awesome. I just met the band, can you bring my black Pumas, they are by the door.
Me: Did you hear what I just said. Do you even care?
Then my cell phone rings. “I didn’t see your first text! I thought you were coming to the event!”
Ok backtracking, earlier on at about 4:30 pm, I was playing with my son doing this playdoh stuff. I hate playdoh.
Then all of a sudden, out of nowhere, I get this excruciating headache that went from a 0-10 in about 5 seconds. Now under normal circumstances, I would think nothing of it. But the past couple of weeks, I have been experiencing these weird head symptoms. It’s burning, and tingling, like you were sitting in the sun too much and getting a sunburn. Except it’s inside your head and appears in different spots, ALL DAY.
I asked my Acupuncturist on Thursday if she sees this with her patients. She said no and that it doesn’t hurt to get it checked out. So anyway, after this headache comes on, I start panicking and I do something that makes the situation worse. I go to Google. Convinced that I am now dying of some type of brain tumor, I text my cousin to help me babysit. She already has plans that night. I then text my bff who thankfully was able to come.
I get to the ER with my phone and charger in hand. This will be a long night. I see the biatch triage nurse and the conversation goes like this.
BTN (Biatch Triage Nurse): What are you here for.
Me: I have been getting these weird head symptoms like burning, shooting pain. It’s not localized, it’s everywhere and goes to my face. Then today, I experienced a massive headache that spontaneously came out of nowhere.
BTN: How long has this been going on.
Me: About 2 weeks.
BTN: This is an EMERGENCY ROOM. You should have went to see your doctor, who would have went through the right protocol follow ups.
OK WHAT? And you don’t consider burning and tingling pain in your head with a sudden onset of a massive headache to be an emergency?
7:30 – The doctor comes in. He jumps into the chair like a little 5 year old. It made me smile. He was the same ER doc that diagnosed my son with a pnemonia 2 years ago. I remembered that I liked him.
Doc: What’s up!?
Me: Hi, I have been having weird head symptoms like burning and tingling and I want to make sure that I am not dying of a brain tumor.
Doc: Ok, we will get a CT Scan and a Lumbar Puncture (Spinal Tap)!
Me: Awesome! But do I really need a Spinal Tap? Is that like an Epidural? I had one when I was pregnant and I remember thinking it wasn’t too hot.
Doc: Well, let’s take a look at the CT and we can go from there.
7:45 – CT Scan
8:30 – Doc comes back and tells me that the CT came out clear. I do not have a brain tumor. I can pass GO. I can collect my $200. However the CT scan is only 96% positive. There is that other 4% which the Lumbar Puncture will cover. An MRI would have done both jobs, however their MRI machine wasn’t available and the Lumbar Puncture was the “cheap and old” way to do it. GREAT!
8:35 – The signal is very crappy at the hospital and I am trying frantically to google Lumbar Puncture. No success.
9:30 – Lumbar Puncture time. A male nurse comes and tells me to change. Everything off except the bottoms. The doc comes back in and tells me what he is going to do. He explains to me that he has to rule out an aneurysm. Now I know that ain’t no joke. A very close friend of ours had died of an aneurysm when he was 28. The doc continues to explain that I needed this done because I said the headache was sudden and that is their protocol. There could have been a ruptured blood vessel, however he doubts it because we are sitting there cracking jokes. BUT there is a chance that if it is ruptured, that was a small rupture and the bigger one might come later.
He puts a wheeling tray in front of me with a pillow on top of it so I can use it to hunch my back and bend over. The nurse prepares all the stuff and the doc inspects my spine. “Wow, you have a nice physique! This is going to be easy!” I was flattered.
He located the spot right, put the numbing needle in, I was still bracing myself for the big needle, but by then it was over. “That was the fastest Spinal I’ve ever done! I should win a medal!” he screamed.
So then I’m instructed to lie down on my back until the results come. Here is where it gets interesting. I learn that the side effects of a Lumbar Puncture is a huge massive headache. WONDERFUL NEWS! Now, if the headache doesn’t resolve on it’s own, as in if no Tylenol, Advil, or whatever can touch it, then to come back in 2 days where they will do a blood patch. This means that they will take blood from your arm and re-insert it back into your spine. EVEN MORE WONDERFUL!
At 11:30pm, I finally get the results. All the 4 vials of my CSF were good. I can go home. In the meantime, he has me scheduled for an outpatient MRI because he likes to “cover all his bases” and a referral to a Neurologist. Did I tell you that I love this doc?
At this point, I was feeling pretty good, until I had to walk to my car in the pitch black. I was scared I was going to be mugged, because I parked really far (to avoid paying the parking fees) and getting to my car involved walking beside a forest on a street with no streetlights in the middle of a not so hot town. I called my friend while running to my car and by the time I got home, my head was splitting like someone had cracked it. I started feeling nauseous.
So I get home and I ask my friend to take a look at my back. I asked if they had put anything on there. She’s like “Um, there’s a huge patch on it, what do you think!?” I was like “Really? I can’t feel a damn thing.” Then I went to bed in exhasution.
This morning, I was feeling good, had some breakfast, then started moving furniture. Yes. don’t ask. That’s what I do. The headache came on in a split second and I had to lie back down. I get back on google and before I was convinced I was dying again, I threw my laptop across the room. I layed in horizontal position nearly all day while my husband and 6 year old waited on me hand and foot.
Later on, bored, I went on google again and decided to go check out this Neurologist.
Why am I so lucky?
Here’s what I think is truly happening to me. I think the Acupuncture treatments are opening up something in my head. The Acupuncturist told me on Thursday that my GI is ok, but my head is severely congested and it will be very challenging to balance it all out.
By the way, I mentioned NOTHING of Lyme while in the ER.