Big adventure today; I hope it ends up being worthwhile.
I left home early this morning and checked into a hotel in Omaha. My first appointment was at 11:15 at the Nebraska Spine Center, a consultation in preparation for this afternoon's procedure. The doctor showed me the MRI images that illustrated the bone spurs in my neck that he thinks are interfering with the nerves that go to my back and right arm.
I arrived at Immanuel Medical Center around 12:30, and they got me ready. The plan was to stick a needle in my neck and inject a steroid into my spine: a "Right C6-7 Transforaminal Epidural Steroid Injection". It's supposed to reduce the inflammation and take pressure off the nerves. I figured they'd put me on the table face-down and insert the needle into the back of my neck. Instead, since the target was in the front of my spine, the needle went in the front of my neck, just above the collarbone, and all the way through to the spine.
Note the needle coming from the left side of the image.
I was quite awake the whole time, and everything went off without a hitch. (Except when he hit that nerve and made my right arm feel like I had grabbed an electric fence. Shit happens.) I was on my way by 3:00. The nurse had called a cab for me, but when it arrived, I gave the driver ten bucks and told him I'd drive myself back to the hotel.
Only I didn't go directly to the hotel. Not having had anything to eat nor drink since 7:30 last night, I was ready for a beer. (OK, it was contrary to medical orders, but I was damned thirsty.) Granite City Food and Brewery has a location near my hotel, and that's where I had my late lunch. The beers were really tasty, as was the Cuban sandwich I had, and Nicole the bartender was a lot of fun. Just what I needed this afternoon!
Tomorrow: pick up Paris at the Omaha airport.