Monday, September 26, 2016

Ketamine Therapy for Residual Nerve Damage via Guillain Barre Syndrome Part 6

When I came to the sign-in desk, the nurse actually mentioned that I could pay by treatment in case I had a huge adverse reaction to the treatment, rather than paying all up front and then having to deal with a hassle of refunding if things went badly.
I filled out general paperwork and didn't have to wait long until a nurse brought me back to the infusion room. Two nurses work the room; there was room for two recliner chairs and two hospital beds. During the therapy treatments, they would be watching vitals, be watching for anxiety to tackle with Versed, and overall help patients as needed if they needed to move around or go to the bathroom.
I was seated at the hospital bed. I had worn tennis shoes and took those off to get comfy. I had brought my own mini foam pillow to help get comfy with my neck and skull pain. I also had my Amazon Kindle and my phone with me. It was kind of hard to prop myself up without it all feeling exhausting from being in a sitting up position.
The nurse then set up an IV to my hand and we got rolling.
They asked me what my current pain level was and I said 6.
For the first 30 minutes I was pretty clear headed and was listening to an audio book of some mini speeches by Seth Godin. I wasn't sure if I would remember anything, so I wanted something short and sweet that I wouldn't mind listening to again if I had any of the amnesia side effects. Around 40 minutes into the treatment, the nurse gave me another injection to the IV, this time it was Versed, a medication to help prevent anxiety. By now my vision had started to slide. They mentioned that hallucinations are a common side effect of Ketamine and that it can also cause dissociation and to prevent that, they say to keep your eyes open. I should have ignored that; the more my vision slid and I tried to focus on things, the worse a pounding and very painful headache increased. By an hour into treatment my coordination was greatly impeded and I had issues even trying to navigate my Kindle from the audio book to getting my music playlist started. From there it was a waiting game of listening to music and waiting for the clock to roll around while trying to keep my eyes open and just put up with the ever increasing headache. Light had begun to get very painful and the ability to focus my eyes on anything was out the window. To pass the time I evidently decided drunk/stoned texting my husband would be a good idea (at least until I couldn't type words...) Then I just sat there listening to music and watching the curtain separator flutter from the AC while my thoughts just spiraled with doubt and frustration.
By hour three I was very disoriented and one of the nurses started asking me about my ride home. Who it would be, where they were, their phone number, etc. This was all information I listed at the front desk and I was so foggy I don't think I was able to convey much information to them. The front desk then called my husband to pick me up and I texted him as well to let him know I would be wrapped up in about 30 minutes.
After those 30 minutes, they unhooked me and pretty quickly had me transferred to a wheelchair. (I got to remember how to do a three point transfer from bed to chair. Didn't think I would be using that anytime soon...) There is NO WAY I could have walked out from that room. (And that honestly made me feel a bit ... weak? annoyed? frustrated? I can't think of the right word for it... undignified, indignant, since I had been seeing other patients getting up and walking out from their treatments with no issues.) Before leaving they asked my pain level and I said 5. I think I said 5 more-so because I refused to allow myself to have gone though that hellish 3.5 hours without some kind of reward. Honestly I still felt loopy but with a raging headache and overall probably still a 6 on the scale but damn it, I was going to force myself to have less pain. (...cause that *totally* works... Please note my extreme sarcasm.)
Husband got caught in a little bit of traffic so I was wheeled into the main waiting room, still quite stoned out of my senses. They needed the wheelchair for a moment so I had to transfer from the wheelchair to the chair. At this point I felt exhausted, nauseous and had a headache from hell and light and sound sensitivity was through the roof. I started to sober up a bit more before my husband arrived and I actually can't remember if we took the elevator down to the car while I was leaning on him or if the wheelchair came back and we rolled down that time. My light sensitivity was near an 8 or 9 at this point.
I was still pretty out of it for the ride home but I also felt like I was going to vomit so we kept a bag close at hand. We made it home without incident and he helped me out of the car, helped me walk from the car to the cot we had set up downstairs in our living room so I would not have to worry about stairs. Since this was the first round of treatment he decided to stay with me and work from home in case I needed help. I think I promptly passed out after some water, Advil, graham crackers and saltines. I crashed on the cot until around 10pm and then dragged myself upstairs to shower and go back to bed. I used Tuesday for complete bed rest and only got out for bathroom and a shower. I was able to do some work from my laptop in bed. My vision was also still on the blurry side and the headache continued to pound. I gave up trying to cut down on the opiates and figured I would tackle one battle at a time and these next two weeks the battle was Ketamine Therapy. I bumped back up to my original dosage of 10mg x 3 through the evening and night. My fatigue and exhaustion was already one hell, at least I was able to cut the pain down a bit. Tuesday night the headache from hell had finally backed down. I still felt nauseous and exhausted.

This was my go bag. It had a place for: sunglasses, a small pillow, a blanket, phone, tablet and headphones. Easy to operate with a flip top and Velcro.

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