I called the radiology department at St. Francis on Monday morning. I figured that if my headache and backache were still this bad that they would probably like to know. Right? I thought that they probably got these kind of phone calls all the time though... whiny patients saying they just had a lumbar puncture and wanted relief?
As soon as I said what my issue was, the receptionist said, "uh oh, not good, I will page the radiologist and we will call you right back. Within 5 minutes he called back and walked me through where my pain was. He said that he would check back in with me throughout the day. And boy did he! He called me 5 more times that day to check in and then at 4:00 he ordered a "blood patch" for Tuesday at 1:30 with the Intervention Radiologist.
A blood patch is where they run an iv in your arm and then they insert another needle into your spine and then draw the blood and insert it directly into your spine so that your own blood will clot, and close the hole in your spine that should have healed on its own. The severe headache is from the inbalance of not having enough fluid because it is leaking... to cushion your brain.... ouch. I didn't care what they had to do, I was just so happy that they knew how to fix how I felt. It got a little tricky because when I was laying there he said that I was going to feel pressure from the blood going into my body, and that i needed to tell him when it felt like there was too much pressure and then he would need to stop. With the left side of my body being as numb as it has been since the spinal tap (an 8/9 out of 10), I had a hard time figuring that out but he was able to put in 8cc of blood. They said that i should find relief within a few hours. I was so excited for that!
They were right, by the time I went to bed on Tuesday night I was feeling a little better and by This morning (Wednesday) the headache was gone! I was still nauseas and everything below my head felt like it had been hit by a truck but hey, I'll take it!! haha!!