Mayo Day 2 – An EMG, a Sweat Test, and 2 Pee Jugs

Posted on January 23, 2014

Day two was much less emotionally taxing than day one. I’ve gotten really good at getting tests done. I have yet to perfect how I handle the implications of these test results. That being said, I don’t have any results yet, so today was a good day… it even felt like recess at times.


Up first was blood work and pee jug pick up. I should correct myself. Pee JugS pick up. That’s right. I have TWO pee jugs. For TWO different tests. The nurse told me to count myself lucky to not have the three day fecal jug. She doesn’t know that I’d hold it for 3 days, returning an empty jug. For as sanitary as this place seems, some of the grossest shit ever goes on here.


Speaking if gross shit… I took a selfie with a needle in my tongue. And there is most definitely no justifiable reason for this.


There’s a high likelihood that I’ve had more EMG’s than anyone on the planet. What used to be a terrifying test now feels easy. I know what’s coming and I know that when it’s over, it’s over. There’s no residual pain, just crazy quick zaps. If you’ve never had an EMG, let me explain the 2 part process to you. Part one, you get tased (as in ‘Don’t tase me bro!’). Part two, they stick needles in your muscles and then ask you to flex while they move the needle around. It’s actually fairly awful. But even more awful? Me asking the Neurologist to pause while I took a selfie of the needle in my tongue.

After the EMG, I had a test I’ve been wanting for some time… the Sweat Test. Not many hospitals that do this test, so I jumped at the chance to get it. Diagnostically, the results can be very informative. The Mayo Clinic actually developed this test in 1982… so it’s as old as I am. Coincidence? Hell yeah. (Ok, I should admit that I’ve been trying to include useful details about The Mayo Clinic in my blog posts… the 1982 Sweat Test factoid was the best I could come up with. I’ll try harder tomorrow.)

Regardless the test was really strange. I’m still not entirely sure what they did, but they did it. I hope to learn more about the test when I receive the results. They secured pads covered in saline with elastic bands on my arms and legs. Then I was hooked up to electrodes (I think?). Then they wrapped a tube around my stomach to measure my breathing. When the electrodes were turned on, it hurt a bit (sort of an itching poking burning stinging feeling). But that sensation only lasted a minute or two. Under the electrodes I apparently started to sweat at some point. They then did some breathing/blood pressure tests where they made my bed vertical and horizontal. I also had to breathe into a tube. They told me to aim for the number 30. I got to the number 20 a couple of times… it was very difficult. I’m super curious about whether Wifey could have gotten to 30. The Sweat Test and the breathing tests were checking my Autonomic Function. An autonomic neuropathy is like the issue with my motor neurons and my sensory neurons, but affects my involuntary nervous system… heart, blood vessels, sweat glands, etc… 

Anyway, I’m tired, I’m hungry, and the news reporter looks like she’s in high school. We’re off to the Canadian Honker for some deep fried cheese curds. I have this commercial in my head:

One last note. The KTTC weatherman just said the windchill tomorrow will be -42 but that doesn’t mean “If you go outside tomorrow you’re going to die”. Ok, will you please clarify what it does mean?

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What Others Are Saying

  1. Carrie February 28, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    -42 wind chill is insane…
    If I get an EMG I’ll get a selfie too 😉

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