Ahh shunt!

Today I went down to Loyola to have another MRI (per doctor order).  Everything was going fine until I heard the nurse ask for the razorblades.  “Razorblades?!” I yelled.  She said “Yes, I hate this part too,” and she told me she would have to shave 9 patches of hair from my head to attach “markers.”  She used a “buzzer.”  Yes, like what boys get haircuts with.  After freaking out for 10 seconds, I closed my eyes and I heard the sound, BZZZZZ!  She began to attach them.  Think dime-sized washer-like stickers attached to my head.  These markers are worn during the MRI as an indicator for the neurosurgeon to see where exactly to put the tubing of the shunt.

For those of you wondering, the shunt is being implanted to drain fluid build-up in my brain and alleviate pressure inside there too.  I’ve been told the surgeon will make a small incision in the right side of my scalp to insert a small tube (outside the skull).  This will extend inside my body down to my abdomen where it drains/dissolves.  Sounds strange, I know, but I trust this doctor and I will do anything to help this entire process go smoothly.

The first MRI machine they tried to put me in was a TAD claustrophobic and I asked to be removed immediately as my heart rate skyrocketed and I couldn’t really breathe.  Luckily they had another MRI machine which was more spacious and took a shorter amount of time to take the scan.  It took about 30 minutes or so and I was out.

Then I headed to pre-admission testing where they took some blood and went over usual pre-surgery questions.  I met with an anesthesiologist and a few nurses to answer any questions.  I was told on Monday this procedure was no big deal by my neurosurgeon, that I’d be put under for about 35 minutes, and hopefully leave the hospital in a day.  Today was a different story from the nurse.  He said it would take 2 hours and I will be in the hospital for 3 days.  Only time will tell….

Anyway, I look like a space alien and I am anxious to see what my hair looks like after they take these markers off, post-shunt surgery tomorrow.

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7 thoughts on “Ahh shunt!

  1. “Welcome to Mars!” So glad you are choosing to blog about this experience, little Goo. You are so brave and strong! Hopefully others in a similar situation can find this blog as a great resource. Good luck tomorrow! We love you SOOOO MUCH!!!!!

  2. Kelly,
    This a great idea! So many benefits. I agree with Lin being a great resource for others, plus it will help you with communicating info to all of us who love you and want to know what’s going on, and it’s therapeutic for you! You are strong, we will be thinking about you and praying during your “Trudy” journey. David and I said a special prayer for you today at bedtime. Good luck tomorrow. Love ya lots!
    The Anderson’s

  3. Good luck with the shunt surgery! This could serve as a practice run for the big surgery in a few weeks… Thanks for keeping me updated through this blog. Haha about the space alien.

  4. This is such a great idea, Kel! I said a few prayers for you but I know you don’t need them. Everything will be fine and you’ll be back to your lovely weird self in no time! Good luck today and I look forward to your next blog telling us how smoothly it went! Love ya Kel!
    Katlyn

  5. Kel, this blog is great. Your writing is so informative and your funny self shines through at the same time. Makes me miss you and our shenanigans. NOAH YESSUH. So happy the surgery went well. I’m thinking about you always. Love you!

  6. I just wanted to let you know I an thinking of you and your family, you all are in my prayers. Remember tough times don”t last. Tough people do.

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