MRI – a human straw experience

I failed!  I chickened out!  Am I not a Viking anymore?

Magnetic Resonance Imaging aka MRI is a well-known procedure, and extremely common.  It is used to assist doctors in diagnosing and treating a large variety of injuries and medical challenges.  It provides them a deeper insight into the body and can help improve as well as enhance recovery processes.

My cardiologist had suggested that I get an MRI to see if the cardiomyopathy had caused any scar tissue on my heart, and just to get a much better understanding as to why my incident occurred.  The MRI can apparently produce high-quality images of the inner workings.  Medical equipment continues to impress me.

Given my desires to do a full recovery and also be enlightened as to what caused my cardiomyopathy, I, of course, agreed to do the MRI procedure.

What could possibly go wrong?

When booking the MRI, the friendly assistant asks the question if I suffer from claustrophobia.  Heck no!  I’m a Viking!  We have survived centuries of pain and pillaging, and I’m sure we can survive a wee bit of magnetic scanning.

Anyway, I do not have a history of claustrophobia, so happily answered “nope”.

I hindside, I really wish they had explained the inner workings and measurements of the MRI, as that might have allowed me to answer a bit more truthfully.

simpson MRIHad they shared that the tube was like a human straw, where your face is about 6 inches from the ceiling of the tube, and that I would be FULLY inserted for 45-60 minutes.  And I mean FULLY inserted into this tight space, from top to toe.

It is not normal to be placed in what felt like a casket.

Nevertheless, I went for my MRI appointment, and the technicians were wonderful.  Really friendly and explained everything very well while prepping me for my human straw experience.

A needle was inserted in my arm, for the contrast being squirted into my system during part of the procedure.  I had to strip almost butt naked and was given a questionable color coordinated gown and yellow anti-slip socks.  I’m sure I was a sight for sore eyes that morning.

We walked into the MRI room itself, and there was the human straw contraption.

They placed me on the small bench like thing, pointing my crack towards the firing hole of the MRI unit.  Then they inserted the IV line and placed a panic button in my left hand.

Now, IV, a small bench and almost naked was fine, but the panic button set off some alarm bells and I had to question the safety of the device.

The lovely nurses also explained that it would be a 45-60 minute experience, no inflight movies, and extremely loud noises.

This started to sound more and more like a very bad idea.

As they rolled me into the mouth of this evil device, they gently placed a blindfold over my eyes to ease my tensions.  This little piece of cloth did not ease any tension!

It’s funny.  As they inserted me into the tube I could feel space getting tight around me.  I couldn’t see it happen but feel the tightness.  When it reached my head I asked them to remove the blindfold only to be greeted by the ceiling of the tube just 6 inches from my eyeballs.


I calmly asked them to stop the procedure and roll me out again.  I had suddenly developed a mild case of claustrophobia and had to get out.  There was no chance I could complete this adventure.

The nurses did suggest to get drugs for the next attempts, although I am not convinced there are enough drugs to keep me calm.  But, I will certainly try.

Better luck next time!

  • Did you have an MRI?
  • Did you succeed?
  • Any tips for a fragile Viking?


Leave a Reply