On Tuesday, I wheeled Bob over to the new neuro doctor's office for his first Botox treatment for cervical dystonia. Of course, it was raining cats and dogs that day, but we were going--come hell or high water, because it had taken 3 months to get in to see this guy.
Before we left, I glanced through the "Botox for Cervical Dystonia" brochure that the neuro doctor had given us three months ago. I guess I just wanted to be informed. Unfortunately, it only ended up scaring the living daylights out of me. All those side effects, including "problems breathing which can be severe and result in loss of life". Jeepers...... For a few minutes, I actually considered cancelling that appointment. But then I reminded myself what Dr. Doom had said about Botox being "one of the safest drugs around" and coming from Dr. Doom, that really means something. So I sucked down my fears and we went.
We got there early. And the doctor was running late.
So we sat a full hour and half in the waiting room, which gave me plenty of time to worry about things like "problems breathing" that can "result in loss of life" and to contemplate grabbing Bob and bolting for the door.
Then Bob's name was called and we went in.
Botox works because it basically paralyzes the muscle it is injected into, thereby loosening up the muscle contraction. It is injected into the muscles via a prefilled syringe with a very, very long, thin needle. This needle/syringe is connected to a computer which measures the muscle contraction. Basically, the doctor sort of pokes around in the target area to find the tightest spot of the muscle and when the computer makes a horrendous noise indicating a tight spot, the doc plunges in the Botox. He did three injections on one side of Bob's neck and two on the other side and one near his shoulder. Then he attacked Bob's hamstring, which is also contracted from dystonia (Bob can no longer unbend that knee) and injected Bob two more times.
All this time, I sat across the room watching and worrying. And though I worried about side effects (and still do, believe me, I am watching him like a hawk), I also worried Bob might drop over dead on the spot. This because Bob's old neuro doc said it was a dangerous procedure to do on the neck as the needle could slip and hit his spinal cord causing immediate death.
But the procedure went fine.
And so far, not a single side effect.
And fingers crossed, the doctor said we should see some positive results in two weeks. At which point, he will order at home PT/OT.
Next on our agenda: foot surgery on Monday...