Thursday, 23 May 2013

Iron Woman

Hey guys!

A few days ago I went in to hospital to have an iron infusion. According to recent bloods I am anaemic & due to having Crohn's I can't absorb or tolerate iron tablets. With surgery coming up soon the Drs want me in tip top shape and so lucky me got to spend the day attached to a drip.

I arrived to the 'Infusion Unit' at 10am and made myself comfortable in a large squishy arm chair.

The infusion room is basically a large square room with arm chairs round the sides, each one with their own side chair, table and drip stand. In the centre are all the trays of medical stuff like needles, saline solutions and packs. The nurses work in the same room all day, which seems really strange compared to normal wards. I got to watch them draw up and mix the medication for each patient. I shared the room with three other patients all of us having different 'infusions'. 
There was only one nurse on duty that could fit cannulas (the little tube that goes into your vein via a needle) so that meant quite a long wait before I was up and running. After about an hour and half/ two hours it was my turn to have the needle put in my hand. Always a favourite activity of mine! It actually didn't hurt too bad and they got it in first time, which is always a surprise. Huge thumbs up to that nurse! The nurse then bought over my medication which turned out to be the weirdest dark brown colour. Lovely! Once I was all hooked up I got to watch it all run in to vein through a clear tube.

I shouldn't have found this so fascinating but I really did. They ran the iron in to my veins for 15 minutes to make sure I didn't have an allergic reaction. After about 5 minutes I started to feel incredibly hot and my face felt like it was swollen and on fire. I decided at the time not to make a fuss and just sat there until it went away. Looking back, that was not the wisest of decisions and I really should have said something. If anyone is ever in that person, definitely say something! Luckily for me, it did go away and I had no other reaction! Given I was doing okay, they then started the four hours of fun!

I was asked if I wanted lunch. Normally this would be an incredibly daft question but this is hospital food... They were going through options when I pointed out I couldn't have lactose and that I was allergic to peanuts. Their faces dropped as they double checked my notes. After years of treatment my notes said I had 'no known allergies'. They were very apologetic and it did mean I could request exactly what I wanted to eat.

My glamorous lunch 

I took my iPad with me and had my phone so thought I would be pretty set up for the day, until I discovered I had one bar of signal and no 3G... I ended up trying to get a magazine to stretch over the four hours. Not so fun I can tell you! It was also only in the last hour that Einstein over here worked out how to recline the chair. I wish I had figured it out right at the start so I could have tried to fit in a cheeky snooze.

I ended up being the last person there, and was so glad to get up and stretch my legs when it was all over. It's amazing how exhausting doing nothing can be, and I spent the days after not doing much and lying in bed. Hopefully the iron will make me less exhausted and run down, and I might be able to go more than a few hours without needing a nap or a lie down.

Heres hoping anyway!

Lots of love!


  1. Thanks for blogging! Its nice to read someone else's words about the life of a crohn's sufferer. You have inspired me to create my own blog, as I am about to embark on the elemental diet and feel it may prove quite therapeutic to me and hopefully let people know about the feelings that come alongside that course of treatment.

    I am inspired by your attitude towards your upcoming op! and I will look forward to reading your blogs to spur me on in my own much less intrusive treatment! Thank you

  2. Hey Kathryn!
    Thanks so much :) I'm so glad that you are enjoying my blog. I have never been on the elemental diet and would be really interested in reading about it! Please post me the link once it is all up and running, I would love to read it.
    It really is very therapeutic, and if it helps anyone or puts a smile on anyones faces then its worth it!