Sunday, February 15, 2009

Heavy-handed nurses & other amusing u/s anecdotes

By now, I'm unfortunately intimately familiar with the affectionally nicknamed, and although it's never pleasant to undress and park my feet in the stirrups, I've never had an experience like this Friday morning.

I'm a va.ginal ultrasound vet of sorts, having had several unpleasant encounters prior to laparoscopic surgery to remove bilateral endometriomas. My previous RE, a woman, wasn't the gentlest of operators, but despite severe Endo and cysts, the u/s itself was never painful, just well, rather uncomfortable. I'd be a hurting unit an hour or so afterwards, but nothing during the u/s. And she was nothing if not thorough.

At a follow-up Endo appointment at a local hospital, the female u/s tech allowed me to insert Mr. Dild o' Cam myself, which of course was weird, but also, well, empowering and even, dare I say it, more comfortable physically. Of course, there was the uncomfortable moment of having to ask how deep to insert it. But I digress.

My first ultrasound at the fertility clinic proved to be bizarre too. There I was, undressed from the wait down, with a new (male) RE I had met just minutes before, a female rep from an ultrasound company somewhere in the deep south, a nurse, and my husband. You see, the clinic was in the process of purchasing a dozen fancy new u/s machines that make your stimmed follicles light up like a christmas tree for fast and easy counting and measuring.

The RE respectfully - but excitedly - asked whether I would mind if the rep was in the room, because he might need help with all the new buttons. "I don't have much of a choice, now do I?" I said with a pathetic but understanding smile. "Oh no, you definitely DO have a choice. It's just that it will go faster if she's here. I'm sure you don't want the probe in you for 20 minutes while I try to find my way with the software," he said, laughing compassionately. So, I didn't in fact have much of a choice, but I relented, because I was already undressed. It went fine. He was gentle, and fast, and the tech kept her eyes on the monitor. The sweet nurse had her back to me, busy somewhere off in the corner. Hubby was trying his best to sit still, not fiddle, and not accidentally press the emergency button that was hanging next to him. Oh, the temptation.

Back to Friday's monitoring... You'd think women would be gentler. Yowser, did it hurt! There's something alarming about a mean-looking nurse on a timed mission, armed with a 6" magic wand and a condom, searching for your tonsils.

Prodding wildly left and right, she went on her follicle hunt, disregarding my exasperated exclamation, "Ouch!" and proceeding to point at the oddly-shaped black circles on the screen as if they were the most amusing thing she ever saw. Yes, poly-cystic-like ovaries, I know.

I tried to ask how many follies she counted, how big they were, you know, the important stuff. She just said it was too early to tell exactly. They'll probably up my stims, but that they need to wait for the blood test results. She'd give me more info about the follicles on Monday. I didn't push her, because you know, she might be armed and dangerous on Monday, and I sure as heck don't want to get on her bad side.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Every time I've had a male dr, they've made me insert the thingy myself for U/S's.
You know, once in a dr.'s office, a DRUG REP was in the hallway during my exam - and the doctor hadn't closed the door. She just sat down and started talking to me and I looked at her like she was nuts. She was seriously going to conduct an exam with this young guy standing a foot outside of the room. The nerve...and one reason I don't go back to that dr.