We left early Tuesday morning for Duke for the nerve block. Mom and I both napped on the way there, since neither one of us like early mornings.
Once we got there, Mom checked in with the nice ladies behind the front desk and we waited for them to call us back. They took us to a room first and a nurse and then the doctors came in to talk to us. Once that was done, Mom said I had to stay with Granddad for a little bit, because the procedure room had to be sterile. For this procedure, they inject lidocaine in to the nerve bundle in Mom's neck using an x-ray to make sure they found the right place. It didn't take long (maybe 15-20 minutes) and they brought Mom back to me and Granddad.
She was a little nauseous and lightheaded at first, but once that passed, she was very happy. The lidocaine numbed the nerve and she didn't hurt in her left side (which is much worse than her right side)!! Mom got to pet my with her left hand for the first time in a very long time. I was happy because I could tell Mom was in less pain, so I relaxed and enjoyed the time with Mom.
Because this worked, it told the doctors for sure that Mom has Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. Now that they know that, they are very very sure that they can help Mom. They are going to implant 2 spinal cord stimulators (which block the pain signals before they reach the brain) and Mom will have AT LEAST a 50% reduction in pain! I will still be a service dog after this, since my ability to sense Mom's pain spikes with let her know she needs to turn her SCS up.
I will be going with Mom to all of this. Even though it isn't one of my tasks, having me there helps her to calm her down.
We really appreciate all the thoughts, prayers and vibes we got from everyone. It really means a lot to all of us!