MRI and EEG

This morning we met with Dr. Lachwani.  What a kind man.  I kept wanting to hug him.  Aside from being kind, I felt he listened well.  He asked for every detail I could think of and took copious notes without ever losing eye contact with me.  He thoroughly explained the process we’d go through while here and asked repeatedly if I had any additional questions, answering each question carefully.  I’m glad he is part of our team.

After meeting with Dr. Lachwani, David had a sedated MRI on his brain.  (They sedate him because he can’t hold still long enough to get a good scan.)  One nurse brought David a wooden train to paint while we waited and another nurse played Connect Four with David.  They were great!

imageMy favorite part was when the anesthesiologist came in to show David the mask that would help him go to sleep.  First, she let David play with the mask.  Then, she let David smear the inside of the mask with flavored Chapstick so the mask would smell like a flavor instead of smelling like plastic.  Instead of choosing just one flavor (grape, watermelon, orange or bubble gum) David chose all four flavors to smear around in the mask.  He had a great time.  Here is a link to a video of David working with the anesthesiologist…. IMG_0295

Directly after his MRI, the EEG technician came down to start putting 23 electrodes on David’s head to prepare him for the long-term EEG.  First, she used a tape measure to measure and then mark his head with a green pencil where each electrode would be placed.  I was impressed with the precision.  Then, she cleaned (more like scrubbed) each spot marked on his head before placing the electrode.  After placing each electrode, she put a glue covered mesh on top to keep each electrode in place.  She had a little dryer…kind of like the air blower the dentist uses while working on your teeth…to dry the glue.  Lastly, using a syringe, she squirted each electrode with lotion to help it get a better reading on his head.  It was quite the process.  But, these electrodes need to stay in place for a 3-5 days.  So, they have to be secure.

Electrode placement for EEG. (He was just coming out of anesthesia, so he was a little groggy.

Having electrodes placed for his EEG.

Electrode placement for EEG.

Now we are in the epilepsy monitoring unit.  David will be here most of the week.  He is hooked up to the EEG and to an EKG 24/7.  He is also monitored by video camera all the time except while in the bathroom.  (His bathroom is right next to his bed.)  David’s wires reach into the bathroom and to the sink, but not much further.  The EEG electrodes never come off of his head.  That way, the doctors collect brain activity every moment.

While in his bed, we built a train track, played the ipad, assembled puzzles and David helped Grandma try to master Stack the States.  By the end of the week, Grandma is hoping to be as good as David at that game.

David and Grandma working on dinosaur puzzles.  (Thank you, Janis!)

David and Grandma working on dinosaur puzzles. (Thank you, Janis!)

Whenever David has a seizure, we push a red button and nurses come in and take notes.  They are wonderful.  They support him through the seizures (since he is awake and aware and afraid,) and help in every way possible.  David had a bunch of seizures this afternoon.  We kept the nurses busy.

I told Tyler that I feel like I’ve already been here a week.  The doctor stopped by the room tonight to talk with me about what he saw on the EEG from the seizures David had today.  The conclusion is that David is a complicated case.

Because of the way his seizures happen, the EEG shows a huge electrical storm of activity.  The doctor is ordering all of the non-invasive tests they can do to try to pinpoint the seizures.  He talked extensively about how he and his team will evaluate the data over as much time as they need to get to the right conclusion for David, even if that means weeks and weeks.  Please pray that they can pinpoint his seizure source.

Tonight I am thankful for nurses who played with my boy like a child and not simply as a patient.  I am thankful for a neurologist who was kind and patient and thorough.  I am thankful for an anesthesiologist who did not rush smearing Chapstick on a plastic mask; who laughed and smiled with my son.  I am thankful for nurses who had sweet voices as they worked with my son during his seizures over and over again.  And I am especially thankful for a doctor, who came back to the hospital at 10:30 at night, to find a mom to tell her about the EEG he saw today about her son.

18 Responses to MRI and EEG

  1. Laura Starley March 18, 2014 at 5:33 am #

    I love the flavored Chapstick mask! Thinking of you and sending our love and prayers. David looks calm and happy in those pics! This is one step closer to figuring it all out…

  2. Diane Lifferth March 18, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

    Thank you so much for sharing Trish. Our prayers are with you all – have never been through anything like what you are going through – and David and everyone else in your family. You are troopers! Wish you the best and thanks for doing the blog so we can follow what is happening.

  3. Jill Petty March 18, 2014 at 4:51 pm #

    Wow! What a long day. I can believe you already feel like you have been there a week. I love how you can find so many things to be thankful for each day. You and David are constantly in our thoughts and prayers.

    • Trish March 19, 2014 at 1:44 am #

      David is enjoying the suckers you gave him!

  4. Barb Svoboda March 18, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

    It will seem like an eternity! No one can tell you how to get through it – you just do it! It sounds though like things are going according to plan and they WILL get the information they need. It sounds like you are surrounded by caring and knowledgeable people – just what you need at a time like this! We are still praying for you back here in Nebraska! One step at a time!

    • Trish March 19, 2014 at 1:45 am #

      Thank you for your continued support. Your experience has helped me through every moment of our journey.

  5. Nicole durrant March 18, 2014 at 6:14 pm #

    I am so glad you are in good hands. The doctors and nurses sound amazing. We are praying for you and David. Sending lots of love your way.

    • Trish March 19, 2014 at 1:45 am #

      Thank you for your prayers!

  6. Courtni March 18, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

    I love your positive outlook and always looking for things to be thankful for in the middle of what I am sure is stressful beyond what I can imagine. I am sure those feelings are spilling over and David will use those same techniques as he deals with all the testing. Lots of thoughts and prayers your way – thanks for the updates!

    • Jenni Peay March 18, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

      Wow, what an busy day. I am so happy to hear about all the great doctors and nurses who are helping you. I LOVED the video, it was so fun to see him bouncing around. Thank you for your beautiful writing and letting us know what is going on. You have so much love and prayers coming your way. Give “Dave” a big hug from us!

      • Trish March 19, 2014 at 1:43 am #

        “Dave” loves his pretty bag you gave him. The stuff inside was great, too, but the bag is REALLY special to him!

    • Trish March 19, 2014 at 1:48 am #

      We will plan a special, celebratory trip to Bear World when this is all over!

  7. Yori Bruemmer March 19, 2014 at 1:35 am #

    Hugs to you and David, what a sweet boy!

    • Trish March 19, 2014 at 1:43 am #

      Thank you!

  8. Jodi Manwaring March 19, 2014 at 2:05 am #

    Thank you for sharing your experience. It is tender to read. You and David are in our prayers each day. BTW, I love the name of your blog. When I read the title, I knew the exact reference.

  9. Carissa March 19, 2014 at 2:11 am #

    I second your opinion on the sleeper chairs and love amazon’s two day shipping! We hope you sleep better when it arrives. We’re praying that the PET scan comes back with straight forward results.

  10. Cynthia Washington March 20, 2014 at 2:50 am #

    Love seeing the smile on his face. Sending love and prayers your way.

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