I am writing to report on the MRI Enterography I had done at Yale New Haven Hospital. Some of you may recall that when I was scoped on June 22, my pouch expert found inflammation in my ileum above the pouch. My doctor then ordered the MRI Enterography to see if there was any thickening of my small bowel that would signal further inflammation farther up the pipeline, so to speak.
I got a call from the Yale New Haven Hospital MRI Center 2 days before the procedure to confirm. I explained that when I had the CT Enterography done in 2008, after drinking Volumen at specifically timed intervals, they could not get an IV going in my arm and 20 minutes of times were wasted while the Volumen travelled pointlessly down my gut. I suggested that to avoid a replay of this comedy show I endured at St. Rafael's Hospital in 2008, we should get the IV in me before I started drinking the Volumen. The tech responded cheerfully that they would note this down for the assigned Tech to review, and she also reminded me to drink plenty of fluids the day before the procedure, so that my veins would be "plump and juicy" (her words, lol).
I arrived for the procedure at 7:30 a.m. After the usual paperwork, they decided to go along with my suggestion and start the IV before I started drinking the Volumen. The radiology tech could not get a vein, so they brought in a nurse and she got the job done, finally sticking a vein on the top of my left hand and then taping the IV insertion tube to my hand.
The next step was drinking the Volumen, which is a Barium Sulfate Suspension. For this test, you must consume three (3) 450 ml bottles of Volumen in timed 20 minute intervals. My timed intervals were 8:25 a.m., 8:45 a.m, and 9:05 a.m. The Volumen, and I hate to say this but it is the only thing that comes to mind, has the color and texture of semen. The taste is not awful, however. It has a slightly sweet, nondescript medicinal flavor which is barely tolerable. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being tolerable or water, and 10 being totally vile/disgusting, I would give the Volumen a 3. I rapidly drank all 3 bottles at each timed interval. The radiology tech was very proud that I got all of it down. The key is to drink it fast and not savor the taste.
I got into the MRI room at 9:45 a.m. They then took about 30 minutes of pics of me in the MRI tube. Had to take deep breaths for most of them. Then at about 10:15 a,.m a Doctor came in and said she was going to inject me with a drug that would slow my bowel motility down, called Glucaphen, or something like that. She warned me that with many patients, as soon as the drug is injected, they experience nausea (the radiology tech later told me it is about 50% of patients experience nausea and vomit). They told me they had a vomit basin there if I needed it. But I was a little scared, because if I had to barf while in the MRI tube, it was not going to be pretty. Anyway, she injected the Glucaphen in my left shoulder, and I felt no side effects from it at all. Not even a slight hint of nausea, and I ate a big egg sandwich about a half hour later. However, right after the Glucaphen was injected in my shoulder, the contrast went in by way of the IV, and it really burned, and I also had a burning sensation in the left palm of my hand, that was so weird I made them stop. We then resumed. They took 10 minutes more of pics after they injected the contrast and the Glucaphen.
I was out of the hospital at 10:30 a.m. Total procedure time: 3 hours.
I then drove over to a coffee shop I like at Yale University and got myself a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich on a croissant, a snickerdoodle cookie, and a large coffee. I was starving even despite drinking all of that Volumen. Food went down great.
I will post again when I get the results.