Thursday, 8 March 2012

A long hard day in London....

Yesterday morning we had to get up about 3:30am to get the university in time for our 4:45am megabus to London. The journey on the megabus itself was pretty uneventful, even though we left so early we only just about made it in time to the wingate institute for my 9:30 appointment.

I was at the wingate institute for a gastric emptying test which is not difficult just incredibly boring. You have to eat an egg sandwich that contains a marker which shows up in breath and so I had to blow into a bag every 15mins for 4hrs. I played a lot of bejeweled between blowing in bags.

After the gastric emptying testing we had to go over to the new royal london hospital. It is very shiney! Rather confusing and easily lost in there though, the signs go so far then just disappear.

The next round of testing was certainly more than "uncomfortable" which is what it said on the leaflet. The first test the oesophageal manometry was horrible, they put a tube down the nose that goes down the throat. I have a hypersensitive gag reflex so this test was very difficult for me. They were testing my swallowing and I had to swallow lots of water and then some biscuit. The numbing spray they used didn't do a whole lot for me so they had to use a fair bit but even then it wore off after a few minutes.

The second test was to put a different tube down my nose and throat which was to measure the reflux over 24hrs. They said that it would calm down after a while and I wouldn't notice it. We left the new royal london hospital and decided that getting the megabus back wasn't such a good idea and I'm glad that Em brought up the idea of getting the train. The journey from whitechapel to paddington took us about 2.5hrs, that's longer than it took to travel across the country. On the bus the tube was constantly moving and I was gagging on it and trying really hard not to throw up.

When we got to paddington finally we were lucky that the train wasn't too expensive and the assistance people were really great about us turning up at last minute. The train from london was ok except I had to finally give up and take the NG tube out because it was so painful and made me feel so ill, I really wanted to leave it in but I just couldn't. I had fought to keep it in for 4hrs and I just had no energy left in me to keep on going, it was just too much.

We finally got back to Bristol Parkway just before 10pm. It was freezing out and we thought great only 15mins until the bus comes so we could go to UWE pick the car up and go home. The bus didn't turn up, I had to ring the bus company to find out why and they said that it had broken down and that we had to wait for the next bus at 11:05 at this point we were just too tired and cold to hang around. We could have got on another bus except the bus company had sent around 2 inaccessible buses in a row! The bus company that had a wheelchair symbol on it's timetable indicating that they were supposed to be wheelchair accessible! In the end I rang the bus company back and told them I would get a cab and charge them for it.

We got home at about 11pm so we had been out for 19hrs. All in all it was a pretty rubbish day and one I do not wish to repeat any time soon. I shall be writing letters of complaint to both bus companies.

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