The Shocks

Written on Wednesday 9th October

So I have just returned from the strangest experience of my life, which involved sitting on a bed and.being administered a series of electric shocks in my feet, legs, hands and arms by an Irish doctor who must surely have one of the most bizarre jobs available in the NHS: Neurophysiologist.

The shocks themselves ranged from the mildly curious and slightly irritating to the profoundly excruciating and although I think I did a pretty good job of being brave (which is to say- I didn’t cry, scream or punch anyone in the face) it would have been obvious to anyone in the room, from my sweaty palms and screwed up face that I wasn’t exactly feeling relaxed.

Mid way through my torturer, sorry I mean doctor asked me where I was from. My brain, clearly scrambled from the pain could not compute…”From? You mean, like where was I born?…” He probably thought I had some kind of learning difficulty. “Yes, where are you from originally?” I told him Yorkshire and he seemed surprised. When I asked why, where did he think I was from both he and the nurse/technician (she never actually introduced herself so not sure of her official role) answered in unison “Welsh”.

That made me laugh. I explained I had been living with a Welsh man for 9 years so maybe I’d picked up a twang or something. Although I’m certain his family would find the suggestion hilarious.

The results of my torture, sorry I mean Nerve Conduction Studies were abnormal. Which is good, in a funny sort of way, because it confirms what we already knew- that I have a demylenating (sp?! neuropathy aka Guillain-Barre Syndrome or possibly CIDP (the chronic version) but the neurophysiologist said that my results this morning are more indicative of an acute episode, which is very reassuring.

Being electrocuted and mistaken for being Welsh: what a morning.


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