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Once more to the breach

Gerald Ingolby has a little prick inserted

After my MRI scan last week, yesterday I returned to hospital for steroid/anaesthetic jab on my troublesome hip which contains the beginnings of osteoarthritis.

It’s a general fact of life – well, mine anyway – that, faced with undergoing some sort of novel medical examination or procedure, the average human ‘switches off’ (thereby avoiding negative anticipation) and simply goes with the flow – this on the basis that the experts involved must know what they’re doing.

That said, I had vaguely assumed yesterday that it would be a case of being taken through to a medical room of some description, ‘trousers down’, a slightly painful jab, and Bob’s your uncle.

Not quite. Having removed my trousers and donned a gown, I was taken to a radiography department peopled by two radiographers, a nurse and – eventually – the doctor doing the business. After a bit of bravado chit-chat by myself, the doctor positioned me on an x-ray machine and the machinery manoeuvred into place (aiming at my groin). The doctor then explained what was about to happen – I’d feel a sharp prick, some downward pressure as the needle was pushed into the offending joint area and then the steroid would be injected, all over in two minutes.

Which it was. In the process, during which the doctor watched what I assume was a ‘live’ x-ray as he moved the needle into the right place, I reacted twice involuntarily as he did his ‘thing’.

Afterwards he asked me to wait outside on a corridor seat whist he saw his next patient and then came to talk to me.

He advised that I should take things easy for the rest of the day – by the evening I would probably be feeling more discomfort than usual, as the anaesthetic gradually wore off. Things would then settle down over the next two or three days. The effects of the jab would last approximately three months. After that, in the longer term, there was no way round eventually having a hip replacement but the important thing was to put this off as long as possible because, current medical opinion has it, once one is done it cannot be repeated.

I returned home and carried on as normal. My only further report is that I wasn’t conscious of the warned-of greater discomfort as the anaesthetic wore off. Perhaps watching ITV’s ‘live’ coverage of England 2-2 soccer draw with Ecuador distracted me.

Anyway, today is another day.



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About Gerald Ingolby

Formerly a consumer journalist on radio and television, in 2002 Gerald published a thriller novel featuring a campaigning editor who was wrongly accused and jailed for fraud. He now runs a website devoted to consumer news. More Posts