Daily Archives: May 14, 2013

Anxiety Begets Anxiety

Yesterday I was in the office of a G.I. specialist, as my stomach has been hurting quite a lot lately. You see, I’m an eater. A foodie. So… it is an odd occurrence for me to have to try and convince myself to eat something. Lately it has been so painful in the moments after eating that my desire for food has shut down.

<enter G.I. specialist>

She said she wanted me to do an endoscopy (where they put a rod with a camera down your throat to look at your stomach) to which I replied in a favorable way.

They put you out for that, right?

I couldn’t imagine them not.

Well it is scheduled for tomorrow, and as I read through the mound of paperwork they gave me about the procedure (which contains a lot of instructions but not a lot of actual information) my heart skipped a beat.

Semiconscious sedation.

My pulse quickened, my throat constricted, and someone threw another log on the fire in my stomach.

All night all I could imagine was having a panic attack right in the middle of the procedure while that thing was down my throat.

Heck, I practically had a panic attack yesterday morning from getting anĀ ultrasoundĀ of my stomach.

I don’t seem to have any say in when these things happen, all I can do is some deep breathing and closing of the eyes (and can you do deep breathing with a scope down your throat?).

This morning, still panicky, I called the doctor’s office to see if I could switch to full sedation. The receptionist said I could, but I could no longer have the procedure tomorrow.

And here is my dilemma. The more time that passes between now and the procedure, the more anxious and panicky I will be. If we had done it yesterday, I was cool as a cucumber, practically sedated on my own, but the notion of anticipation doesn’t bode well for me.

At this point I am waiting to see who will win out. The anxiety about the procedure itself, or the anxiety around waiting for the procedure to happen. I know either way it is going to be wildly uncomfortable, and I am waiting to speak to the nurse to get more details about the procedure before I make my final decision.

Of course, there is more to it as well. I need a chaperone because of the sedation, and getting that straightened out has really been the hardest part. Having to schedule a new appointment all over again would undo the work I did yesterday, and my chaperone wouldn’t be for sure. Without a chaperone, they will cancel the appointment when I arrive.

It’s an edgy morning. I’d better force-feed myself some breakfast.