Popping in for a quick update… Saw the neurologist yesterday morning. The x-rays showed no subluxations (I am researching to see if that is even what they need to be looking for or if a regular x-ray is going to definitively catch AAI). However, as we were talking about it, Em piped up and said they didn’t have her bend her neck remotely as far as it could. So, we are going back for more x-rays and I will go in with her to make sure it is done right. Still don’t trust the radiologist to diagnose this – would rather have a neurosurgeon look at the films themselves and I suspect that is what is going to happen, one way or the other.
Dr. Parnell decided that the next step after the prednisone didn’t help, is a daily infusion of dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. or migranal), an anti – migraine med, 2x a day for 3 days. Which of course means a lot of time spent at Reid or driving back and forth. Not to mention the IV. We got done with the appt in time to get the infusions started yesterday, much to Em’s dismay.
By the time we drove over to Reid, they were waiting for us. Unfortunately, it took 3 tries and about 45 minutes to get the IV going. I warned them she might be a hard stick and, boy, was I right. After the first 2, both with a fair amount of prodding , trying to find a vein, the nurse called in another ‘expert’ sticker. Well, despite her confidence, it took her about 5 minutes of searching and prodding with the needle to actually find a vein. They have a machine called a vein finder – under a special light, the veins are illuminated under the skin. She had to use this machine while she was digging around in Em’s arm with the needle. I have heard people say ‘the vein rolled away’ or ‘my veins hide’ but this was the first time I have ever seen it – you could literally see a perfectly good vein roll, shimmy and dance away from the needle. Em was a trooper through it all but was not a happy camper. The experience did not help her fear and loathing of needles! The nurses were great and tried their best to do the IV in a way that would last so Em doesn’t have to go through that again. I just pray that it lasts til the end.
Anyway, the first dose seemed to give a bit of relief of her headache so I got hopeful, even though I was skeptical to begin with. We went and got some lunch (she ate only a few bites d/t the nausea) then we went to Walmart and killed some time. Then went back to the hospital and hung out in the conference room on the ARU where Andrew works. He pulled the blinds and got her set up in a recliner to rest so we didn’t have to drive home. The afternoon dose really made her feel awful – it hurt going in the IV and made her headache worse and nauseated. Pulse was ok so they sent us home. She slept all the way home, fell back asleep as soon as she got home, woke up long enough to eat a few bites of supper then was out for the night by 9:00. She had only 2 hours of sleep the night before so she was exhausted.
Back up early this morning to be at Reid at 9. This time the medicine – even just the saline- burned and stung. They checked the IV thinking they might need to redo it, but decided they didn’t want to try another stick considering her experience yesterday. They pushed the medicine slowly but still it hurt badly and made her feel awful. She got very nauseated and threw up before we left – one of the major side effects of the DHE is nausea. We came home and she has slept all day.
Have to get ready to head back to the hospital. Got to get the x-rays done sometime but she has just not been up to it… Poor kid, I hate to see her suffer so much for something that probably won’t give her any relief. We go back to Dr. Parnell next week so maybe this will help us rule out what doesn’t work.
Got to go somehow get the kiddo out of bed and drag her back to the hospital so she can hurt and be sick. Being a mom sure does suck sometimes. 😦