New Tech

26 Oct

I am really excited about the new tech! There is no longer the bag hung from an IV pole that you have to sit in one place and wait an hour for it to be done. The meds come in a little ball. They told me this over the phone and I was a little scared at first. What? Do I have to squeeze the ball to administer the meds? That was freaking me out a little bit. And last night, when they finally showed up at 9:30, the little balls look like hand grenades. lol!

The hook-up is also significantly easier. Instead of having to have the nurse come back all three days I can just do it myself. I will admit that this is making me feel a little bit self empowered. 🙂 Like if I can do this then for some reason all is right in the world. Let me give you the quick and thank goodness, not so dirty of it all.

Obviously I had to have to nurse come and start the IV. That is something that I don’t think that I am willing to do. Maybe if push came to shove. I am getting much more comfortable with needles. Eeek! But for now I will let someone else stick the needle in my vein. So that part is easy. Just don’t watch and it’s a piece of cake.

She let me do everything else.

Swap the end of the tube with an alcohol swab, attach the saline solution, push that through.

Then all you have to do is attach the ball. It screws on. Super easy. No mixing meds, no regulating the speed of the drip. I don’t even have to sit in one position the whole time. I could walk around and do things. AWESOME! I wish that they would do this for the Tysabri. The little ball squeezes the medicine out all by itself. Then there is a little plastic doohickey that regulates the speed. I bet that there is some complicated name for it too.

Now you just wait your hour.

Side Effects: well instantly I can tell you that I got very nauseous. Have chips or something! Also I got very tired. Which makes you think “Hey maybe you should just be sitting on the couch anyway,” But of course I didn’t. Maybe tomorrow. Otherwise I’ve got nothing. Lasting side effects I don’t know. I will reiterate what I always say. Having an IV in your hand hurts. It is more painful than anywhere else. I’m not sure why. It has nothing to do with the initial needle input. It’s while the meds are running through your vein. My arm actually started hurting up to my elbow. But I figured that if it was in my left hand then I could still do things like shower. Yeah! I do enjoy being clean. 🙂 Oh and there is the inevitable bad taste in your mouth. Love that.

Then after the hour is up you flush it again with Saline and then a syringe of Heparin.  I actually need to do the Heparin again before bed to make sure that my vein doesn’t clog up and I have to call the nurse back to start a new IV.

Last time this was so scary. With the medicine mixing and the whole drip system. I thought that Rich was going to kill me. This time I can do it all myself and it’s all plug and go. I love technology. My only concern now is that I have to take out the IV myself. I’m a little bit nervous about that.

Ok resting time if over. Time to go get some stuff done. 🙂


That’s me holding my little ball of meds. 🙂



Posted by on October 26, 2013 in Life with MS


Tags: , ,

3 responses to “New Tech

  1. Meg Lewellyn

    October 28, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    🙂 I first had “the ball” almost four years ago. although back then it wasn’t a ball, it was more the shape of a babies bottle and to be honest preferred that shape a bit better as it fit into a pocket easier. I have become so cavalier about the whole thing that I will even be found at the gym, on the eilliptical trainer, cruising along as the steroids flow into my body. I sometimes forget that the site of an IV line going into a person’s arm CAN be a bit shocking and have to try and remember to hide it beneath a sleeve when hitting the grocery store or post office.
    Being a single mom with three kids and all of their school activities and sports, I can not begin to explain just how much I appreciate NOT having to go into an infusion center anymore. Actually, back when I was first DX and needed my first round of steroids, the neurologist I was seeing “insisted” that I would have to CHECK IN to the hospital for THREE days….uuuhhhh, nope, that wasn’t going to happen. Apparently back when they first started administering the steroids to help with flair ups that was standard protocol (saying they needed to monitor you AND help with sleep?!?) BUT fortunately for me, he quickly learned that was no longer the case (plus there was NO WAY insurance was going to pay for that!:) BUT for the first 2 years they made me go into the infusion center twice a day – at least four hours apart. I would drop the kids off at school, high tale it to the hospital that was 30 minutes away (calling the nurse en-route to order up the drugs) arrive demanding they hook me up asap…stay there an hour, leave and do my grocery shopping or other errands for 4 hours, run back for second half – sit for the required hour and then rush out the door, to make the 30 minute drive, putting me back at the kids school JUST in time for dismissal. As they are in school for 6 hrs a day (with a small bit of time before and after) if you add up the time,, there was NO time to spare, and was exhausting!
    Thank GOD for the ball!

    • Janet DiFolco

      October 28, 2013 at 3:31 pm

      Meg that’s crazy! I think that doing the infusion while at the gym is definitely too ambitious for me! On the couple of times that I went out this weekend I hid my hand in my jacket sleeve. I still felt like an invalid though. It hurt every time I used that hand.
      The little balls are wonderful! But you are right it doesn’t fit in your pocket.
      😦 maybe by my next relapse it will be even better. 🙂

      • Meg Lewellyn

        October 28, 2013 at 3:38 pm

        I hope so too. It took a while for me. The biggest issue for me about the ball isn’t even the pocket, I used to wear a large tshirt or sweatshirt and slip it into my bra when it was shaped like a bottle (a trick carried over from when the kids were little and I wasn’t wearing something with pockets and wanted to have a bottle along:) I actually wrote an email to the manufacturer about changing it back….and NO although it MAY seem like it, it was NOT because I have too much time on my hands! LOL Hope you recover quickly!
        And yea, I know the gym thing is crazy and stupid but that is just me. I found it HELPS so I just go for it, but DO realize that it is NOT normal:)


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