Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Going blind and getting your brain frozen

I went for a medical test at the hospital last week that really freaked me out.
It's called a fluorescein angioplasty

Basically, it was taking photos of my eyeballs! Yes, eyeballs.
The inside and the back where the retina is.
That's what it looks like above.

The whole experience was truly surreal.

It was exactly like those sci-fi movies of aliens doing medical operations on abductees. The whole scene is blurry, lots of wires, tubes, weird sounds and flashes of coloured lights.

It starts with the nurse giving you eye drops which dilates the pupil in your eye. This makes everything you see not only blurry but very very bright. Its like looking at the world through frosted glass. When your eyes are fully dilated, you are led into a darkened room. omg! It's full of machinery, wires, tables of syringes, medical equipment and what not.

The doctor then comes in and injects a yellow dye (sodium fluorescein) into your blood vessel. He keeps peering into your eyeballs with his scope and then after an eternity says "OK." This is when the technician leads you to humongus machine and straps you in! (just kidding ha ha). You are seated at a machine called a Fundus Camera. Your eye is pressed against a viewing scope and the technician shoots a laser light into your eye to take measurements.

Once he's ready he says "ok look at the red light and don't blink".
What happens next can only be described as having a 7-11 Slurpee brain freeze x 100! Flash! flash! flash! flash! flash!
Bursts of bright flashes rips through your eye, and while there is no physical pain, the torture is like having your brain frozen in an instance! The pain is pure and mental!
Then, the whole process is repeated with the other eye, at the end of which you are totally blinded, literally. Your eyes, as well as your mind, are completely blacked out.
The guy who invented the fundus camera must have worked for the Inqusition or gestapo previously.

A funny side effect is that the dye in the blood takes a while to be discharged from the body.
Your urine is bright fluorescent yellow for the next few days!

No comments:

Post a Comment