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The pump is filled with the medication while you are in the surgical suite, and the programming is initiated. It will be functioning before you leave the surgical suite.
We will assess that the pump is functioning correctly by observing for signs of pain relief from the medications, as well as development of numbness from the local anesthetic. You will be monitored for 20 to 40 minutes by a Recovery Room nurse and a Pain Management physician.
If there are no signs of problems, you will be ready to leave the recovery area and be transferred to your room in the Ambulatory Treatment Unit for observation overnight. You will be monitored for correct functioning of the newly placed intrathecal pump, as well as for any complications related to the procedure and the anesthesia. If there are no signs of problems, you will be ready to leave by the next day.
You will need to return to the Pain Management Center for refills of the pump approximately every 30 days. Also, your pump can be reprogrammed at anytime by the Pain Management physicians using an external programmer. You will also be taught how to turn the pump on and off yourself while at home, using a magnet.
What should I expect from this procedure?
You will require a short period of recovery from this minor surgical procedure. You may notice soreness in the abdominal wall where the intrathecal pump is placed, and some soreness in the back where the catheter is inserted; this is usually quite minimal. There will be some bruising which may last up to a week, but will resolve. Your home nursing agency will assist in monitoring the two sites for any evidence of infection. Signs to monitor are redness and/or increased pain or swelling of the two incision sites. The stitches will be removed at the Pain Management Center in approximately one week, provided that the incisions are well healed.
These will be provided for you, in further detail, by the nurse, prior to your discharge from the hospital.
Signs to monitor are redness and/or increased pain or swelling of the two incision sites. The stitches will be removed at the Pain Management Center in approximately one week, provided that the incisions are well healed.