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MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING Caleb Flachman

In no way does the nurse installed in the doorway of the radiology waiting room resemble the nurse typical of my experience, but she is emblematic. She is by all definitions stout, sporting a short-cropped wiry haircut and a face like a recently animated cantaloupe. She feigns interest as she leads me through a heavy door and into a blue room where she sits me down in a blue chair and rather suddenly produces an IV. I roll up my sleeves faster than I thought possible. Any issues with contrast dye? I tell her no. She perfunctorily ties a blue strip of rubber about my right bicep so that my veins bulge fabulously and then mashes the inside of my elbow with an alcohol wipe. Ready? She proceeds without waiting for a response and botches the landing twice before striking my vein. It suddenly seems to me that she was consigned to scanning people in the darkest corner of the basement because she is the entitled ogre-child of some obligated executive. Then comes a passively enumerated list of things that could cause complications during the scan. Implanted pacemaker? No. Shunts? No. Catheter? No. I wonder if that’s something she asks everyone or if my anxiety is visible and thus inspiring her, like a carcass to a vulture or a tumor to a troll. Aneurysm? No. Cochlear implants? No. Pellets or BBs? No. I imagine a caricaturish redneck­—a real man’s man—ignoring a decades-old hunting accident and then having tiny metal shards ripped from his insides by the powerful magnets in the MRI. Vascular stent? No. Neurostimulators? No. Insulin pump? No. The nurse looks me over from behind her clipboard and gives a little half-snort-chuckle-smirk. Pregnant? She genuinely thinks this is funny.

Profile for Ivy Leaves Journal of Literature & Art

Ivy Leaves Journal of Literature & Art — Vol 93  

The Ivy Leaves Journal of Literature & Art is an annual student publication at Anderson University in Anderson, SC. The journal has served a...

Ivy Leaves Journal of Literature & Art — Vol 93  

The Ivy Leaves Journal of Literature & Art is an annual student publication at Anderson University in Anderson, SC. The journal has served a...

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