Thursday, December 2, 2021

Hello dildocam, my old friend...

So, I had an ultrasound on Tuesday afternoon to check out the state of my gallbladder/gallstones. I will swear my family dr had designated an "abdominal" ultrasound on the requisition form -- but the imaging centre where I booked the appointment insisted I was there for an abdominal/pelvic ultrasound. 

You know what that means, right? Hello dildocam, my old friend... 

To add insult to injury, the ultrasound was carried out beneath a poster with a photo of a giant baby smiling down on me, with the title "Watch me grow!" and smaller images below of the baby at different stages of pregnancy. 

The tech asked me how many children I had (of course). I sometimes will respond "one pregnancy, no children," but this time I just said "no children." 

She then asked me "are you sexually active?" -- and then sort of corrected herself and asked "have you been sexually active?" 

?!! WTF?! Like, I've never had a baby, so I've never been sexually active -- is that what she was thinking??  Or, hey, you're 60, so your sex life must be over?? 

I've never been asked that question at an ultrasound, ever, and I'm *really* not sure what it had to do with what I was there for. Needless to say, I was not impressed. 

I was even less impressed when the transvaginal portion of the scan turned out to be the most uncomfortable (even painful at times) that I've ever had.  (And, as you know, if you've ever been through infertility treatment, you get to know the dildocam pretty well...!)  

There were a couple of other (non-ALI-related) reasons why I wasn't impressed: 
  • The clinic was in the basement -- nobody around, and it felt kind of creepy walking down the hallways by myself.  (Okay, not the clinic's fault, but...)
  • It was all painted in shades of grey -- very dark and gloomy, with just one small basement window providing light from outside. 
  • The staff at the reception desk were all bickering and complaining among themselves in front of me.  Very professional (not). (I was the only client in the waiting area, although several women left while I was sitting there, presumably after their own scans or X-rays were done.) 
  • They asked me if I'd had water. I hadn't -- because when I called to make the appointment, they told me not to eat OR drink anything for four hours before the appointment. 
  • It was about 100F in the examination room. 
  • The tech doing my scan asked me when my appointment was scheduled for -- I said "3:40." It was about 3:50-4 by then. (I arrived several minutes before my appointed time.) She grumbled that they'd allotted her 20 minutes for a 40 minute exam (which reinforced my belief that they screwed up somehow on the abdominal/pelvic thing).  
  • I explained to her that I was having gallstone issues, that I'd been having problems on & off for 20 years. Then I got a lecture from her about why I hadn't had my gallbladder out years ago -- "it's best to have it done when you're young" (!! -- do I really look that ancient??) -- and then I got to hear about her sister's operation and the complications she'd had (!!). 
  • When she was done, I got dressed and walked back down the hall to the reception area and exit. It was empty, the lights were off and it was dark!! (Not pitch dark, there was some light from the hall I'd just come down, but...!) I looked at the sign outside -- the office closed at 4 p.m. It was about 4:15 and there was just the u/s tech, me and one other guy there (sitting in an office with his jacket on, obviously ready to leave). I mean, couldn't you leave the lights on until the last person was leaving?? 
I booked at this clinic because dh is on jury duty and has the car (not that I'm much of a driver anyway...), and it's close enough to our condo building that I could easily walk there myself. But I won't go back there again unless I'm in a similar situation in the future. :p  

(For tracking purposes:  after this is published, I will have 4 more posts to go to reach 200 in 2021, and 9 more posts to reach 2,000 since I began blogging in October 2007! :)  Hoping to reach those milestones before the end of December/2021!)


  1. * "Like, I've never had a baby, so I've never been sexually active -- is that what she was thinking??"

    I should add, obviously I HAVE been pregnant/had a baby -- just one that never lived -- but I told her I didn't have children. It's my knee-jerk/easy response most times when strangers ask me that question. But even if she was basing her comment on that assumption, I still don't see why it was necessary for her to ask...!

  2. Good grief. What's any of that to do with your gall bladder! I think I would have asked why she needed to know. That sounds like such a violation, especially if it was rough. (My worst dildocam felt like the operator was driving a manual car, and making gear changes with it).

    What a horrible place. I hope you don't have to go again.

  3. Your title made me laugh, but the clinic didn't! Sounds like they were not really on the ball AT. ALL.

    May you never need to go back.

  4. Thanks, Mali & Lori! Dh thinks I should leave them a scathing review on Google. I'm very tempted, but I don't want to burn my bridges in case I find myself in a similar situation and need to use their services again someday, lol. ;) Hopefully I won't!

  5. Well poo on the whole "have your gallbladder out young" - my BFF and her mom both have had theirs removed. Her mom was in the last couple of years- just before the pandemic in fact, and she recovered quickly. My BFF had hers out when we were somewhere between 25-30 and had been going to the doctor and ER regularly with issues. By the time they removed hers it was falling apart in the surgeon's hand and she ended up septic and in the hospital for 2 weeks. So, I say age is just a number!

  6. Ugh. What a nightmare appointment!! I am so sorry.

  7. Sorry this happened - LOVE your title though.....

    I utterly can't stand that it's so commonplace for us to be asked about children when we're geting probed one way or another.

    I go to this imaging place that is otherwise great, but I'd get asked "the question" during my breast mammos and sonnos (not all, but most of the time), and even when I was in for an MRI when they were trying to diagnose my nerbous system disorder. There I was, dizzy as hell, nauseous, feeling on death's door.....and there goes the question. WTF??

    Anyway, this was only three years out of treatments so I was still quite raw so I wrote a letter (which I'm sure was also quite raw!) explaining why their medical professionals (who were otherwise solid) should not do this. I provided statistics and everything. Never heard from them, but I haven't been asked the question since.

    Hope you don't have to go back to this place as it sounds like there are a bunch of other things that are off there.