Gastrografin – One of Life’s Experiences

gastrografin misery

Gastrografin (Diatrizoate Meglumine and Diatrizoate Sodium Solution) is a palatable lemon-flavored water-soluble iodinated radiopaque contrast medium for oral or rectal administration only.

Oh Lord, Gastrografin is evil stuff to drink down and I had to drink two large cups of the stuff for my CT scan yesterday. And I wasn’t allowed to glug it down (if that were even possible) as I had to drink it slowly over a period of one and a half hours – it was a very long appointment.

Even just thinking about it now has me remembering the taste but I lack the skills to narrow down what exactly made it so bad. It didn’t taste like anything I know (palatable lemon my arse!), it wasn’t sour or bitter but with every mouthful of the drink  I was gagging and at one point I did throw it up. Truly it was foul. A technician suggested that it tasted like bad country town water…. I’ve never tasted water like that in any town I’ve ever been to, so I pity the town that has water like that.

It was so bad that I went hunting through my backpack and found a very old packet (like years old!) of chewing gum (I hate chewing gum) and actually stuffed two pieces in my mouth to try and get rid of the taste. My friend Charmayne calls it the lemonade from hell… and I have to agree.

Then to add serious insult to injury, I had to have an IV put in as well…. it was really most unfair. The dye they put in via the IV makes you feel like you’ve wet your pants which is a delightful experience at any time, but the technician assured me that they never had anyone wet themselves for real before. Can I just say I prayed I wasn’t their first!

But the scan was over very quickly (ten minutes and done) and now begins the wait for the results which will come through in a couple of weeks. I’m expecting everything to be fine. My CA-125 was stable in the last test so I’m not going to allow myself to get into a tizzy over it again. I’m more worried about the blood test I had to check on my kidney function than worrying that the scan will show any more growths.

And may I suggest that if you ever have to drink Gastrografin you don’t have butter chicken for dinner the same day as you will be burping up Gastrografin and butter chicken all evening?

Yeah, chalk that up to one of life’s experiences.


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