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Picture taken by my friend Cyndi Leos....thank you Cyndi.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sleep Study: Just Call Me Hannibal Lecter With An ET Finger...

It's 10:30am.  I got home from my sleep study at 6 am.  Izzy had been sleeping on my bed and came scampering to greet me.  She did well staying alone, all night with my husband, for the first time.  We took a couple of laps around the block, enjoying a nice, long, brisk walk and watched the sun rise over the valley below...

I was scheduled to arrive at the Nocturna Sleep Center last night at 9 pm, but one of the staff called and asked if I could come at 10:30pm instead.  The staff were very professional, informative, kind and friendly.  The rooms are small, but stylishly designed like any top rated hotel.

I was given a questionnaire to complete, mainly to see if I had any aches or pains and how I felt generally.  I changed into my PJ's and a nice young women came in to attach all the electrodes to me.  It took about forty-five minutes.  I had straps across my chest, my rib cage and my waist.  Leads on my legs, arms, neck and a clip taped around my right pointing finger with a red light, like the tip of ET's finger.

The two worst part were tubing like oxygen, only with sensors on it, which I had to wear up my nose with some piece that hung down toward my mouth (very irritating), and the leads put on my scalp.  First, she exfoliated the spots on my scalp before she put the gel on.  Kind of scraping my scalp.  The gel was thick like toothpaste, followed by the base, the lead, and then wrapped with a cotton ball.

When she finished, I asked her to take a picture of me to share with you all.  I looked like Hannibal Lector!


What do YOU think?

This picture was before she put all the leads on my head.

She put that toothpaste gel on my face and then taped the tubing in place.  Lovely, huh?  Behind my head was a five inch by five inch block where all the ends of the leads were plugged into and it is gathered and secured behind my neck...

And I am suppose to sleep like this??? 

She told me to buzz her if I needed to go to the bathroom or needed anything.  She asked if I needed anything and I asked for a fan, as I usually sleep naked with the windows open and I knew I would be HOT wearing Pj's.  They observe me throughout the night via a camera, so I opted to wear the PJ's. The blanket was very light and I prefer some weight on me, so she brought me another blanket.

I popped my cholesterol medication, drank a sip of water, got my ear plugs out so I would not be distracted by the sound of the fan, and tried to make myself "comfortable".  Once the tech reached the front desk, she called me on the intercom to have me follow some verbal commands to make sure everything was connected properly.

She had me wiggle my legs, my hands, fingers, open and shut my mouth, move my eyes up and down and side to side, breath in and out only from my nose, then only from my mouth, shut my eyes, open my eyes, and breathe with my belly.  After the OK, I put my ear plugs in and told myself as soon as I went to sleep, the sooner I could get all the wires off me and go home!

I normally fall into sleep quickly.  It took some twenty or so minutes of self talk to take myself some other place to distract myself from where I was, and finally fall asleep.  I woke momentarily when I would turn over or was too uncomfortable in a particular position, but I did sleep...I even had a dream... of being released and going home!

The leads on my head, reminded me of sleeping with bobby pins when I was a little kid.  Kind of "pokey" and uncomfortable.  At some point in the night, I began to get a headache from the stuffiness of the room and lying on those "porcupine leads".

Thankfully, at 5:20 am, I heard the muffed voice of my tech asking me to wake up.  She told me to open my eyes but to stay in bed and not go back to sleep.  Surprisingly, I felt wide awake.  I was so relieved to get out of there!  I became aware of my headache and my right ET finger, which was throbbing with pain...


Turns out the pulse lead on my finger with the red light was taped so tight, I got a blister.  Hurt like heck!  I told her and she apologised telling me I must have sensitive skin and I am the first blister she has ever seen.
(I am happy to report it has disappeared and no longer hurts....)

As she gently pulled off the tape from my face (OW!!!!!) , disconnecting me and removing the gooey leads from my scalp, she commented on how thick my hair was and I may have to wash it three times to get it all out of my hair.

Actually, it made an excellent root enhancer as my thick hair looked three times as thick as it normally does...some what resembling a Halloween Fright Wig...


I had to fill out another questionnaire and then I was released to go home.  I should get the results in a week to ten days.  If I have sleep apnea, I have to come in for ANOTHER sleep study...

 LETS HOPE I AM JUST A LOUD CHAMPIONSHIP SNORING MASTER....

11 comments:

Wanda..... said...

I never realized it was such an ordeal, thought it to be just a few electrodes. Your hair actually looks pretty good Donna!

DJan said...

Yikes! I wonder if I could sleep like that. And here's hoping! BTW, that is quite the setup and you did have a slight resemblance to our friend Lector!

Betty said...

What a set up! I´m surprised you were able to sleep so quickly. I sure hope you don´t have to go through that again.
Thanks for sharing the pics. Looks frightening!

Chatty Crone said...

Oh my goodness what an ordeal - and you survived all that. Guess there are no answers yet.

Why toothpaste?

I am surprised you got to sleep.

Well hope they can help you.
sandie

Mari said...

I know I would have a hard time falling asleep in that get-up! Glad it's done, and now we just wait!

Coloring Outside the Lines said...

Oh my goodness, that sounds like an ordeal! My luck I would lay awake all night and have to come back and do it again!

Donna B said...

They had a plasma 48" TV on the wall. I could have watched TV, but I wanted to get to sleep so I could wake up and get out! I love an adventure, and that's what it was...

Thanks Wanda about the compliment on my hair...I told you it was a "hair root booster"
LOL...

Ha ha...yesh, thanks DJan for seeing the resemblance...I thought so too!

Betty: I was amazed myself!

Sandie: The gel they put on with the electrodes WAS LIKE the consistancy of toothpaste...

Mari: It certainly was a challenge.

Coloring: Believe me, I thought of that...it would have been TERRIBLE!!

That corgi :) said...

What an experience, Donna! Glad you had them take your picture when you were all attached with electrodes and whatnot; something to remember it by! Good for you for sleeping, I honestly don't know if I could under those conditions, but I like your attitude to try to go to sleep so you could get it all over with. Good luck with the results!

betty

Marylinn Kelly said...

It sounds like such an ordeal...being able to sleep under the circumstances should be enough to have passed the test. And how brave to show us the photos (though I envy the thick hair...good genes, I imagine). Glad it's over. You sound like the sort of patient that makes their work easier...I can imagine they get all kinds.

Madame DeFarge said...

I could never sleep like that. I'd feel too constrained. Impressed that you managed it.

Helen said...

Your photos are priceless! My daughter-in-law just went through this ... which reminds me, I must call to find out the results. Take care.