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morphine pump

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Old 07-24-2006, 07:49 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 8
zcb HB User
morphine pump

My husband has had 3 back surgeries and all 3 have failed. Now his pain management doctor is talking about a morphine pump. Does anyone out there have one or have experience with one? It's a pretty drastic step for him because he is so prone to infection and apparently this is a problem with the pumps. He is in pain 24/7 and no drug touches it. Further surgery is out of the question so the pump is the only answer right now. Any comments would be very appreciated. Thanks.

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Old 07-24-2006, 10:32 PM   #2
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: georgia
Posts: 42
pooh26 HB User
Re: morphine pump

This past Jan. I had a 2 level spinal fusion. This was my 2nd surgery and I am only 26 yrs. old. Though I do not have a morphine pump, one of my friends dads had 3 major surgeries on his back. And like your husbands all three failed. He decided to get the pain pump and it only made things worse for him. He no longer has it and is still in a great deal of pain. But not everyone I'm sure has had bad experiences with it. I hope and pray that everything works out well for your husband.

Old 07-24-2006, 11:06 PM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Bullhead City, AZ USA
Posts: 6
LadyD58 HB User
Re: morphine pump

Hi, I have had several back surgeries myself. I even had a nuero stimulator in me at one time, they recently took it out as it was doing no good. They wanted to put a morphine pump in me along with the stimulator. I got lucky the trial pump was faulty and I did not let them do it again. A friend of mine was working at a nursing home at the time and she told me of several patience in there that had the pump in and almost of them were failing or causing infection. I take very high doses of morphine everyday and would preferr the pills to the pump. The pain is dangerous because it will increase his blood pressure. Have you tried taking liquid morphine orally? I really would exhaust all other avenues before having the pump inplanted. Have they tried the trial pump yet to see if it even gives him relief? Also ask your doctor for the video on the pump if you have not already seen it. It is a drastic step and I firmly belief it should be a last resort.

Old 07-25-2006, 01:06 PM   #4
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 437
charliecat31 HB User
Re: morphine pump

I had a morphine pump implanted about 3 years ago and will be glad to answer whatever questions I can for you. Whatever you still have questions on - please ask away. I know how big of a step this is to even consider. I haven't heard of infections being a big issue with pumps, but that doesn't mean it's not true.

I have DDD in 3 discs and after trying everything that was available to me and it failing and being told that further surgery was not an option, we needed to concentrate on a lifetime of pain control. My PM doc recommended doing a trial of the pump. That went well and we decided to go ahead with the pump. This trial period is about a week long and is a great thing to see how your husband will react to the morphine. They don't necessarily get the dosage where it needs to be, but enough that you can tell if there are any reactions.

I've had some success with the pump. It has brought the pain down when I do absolutely nothing. Most people get a much higher pain relief than I've been able to get, but with my back as bad as it is, I still have to take oral meds and am extremely limited in what I am able to do.

There are two types of pumps, so please make sure that your husband discusses the benefits of each with his doc. One works on hydrolics (kind I have) and the other by battery. The are filled differently and the dosages changed differently, so there is a big difference between the two.

Has the doctor shown you the actual pump so you and your hubby can get an idea of how it works and what it looks like? They implante the pump resevour in your front (one important thing is to discuss placement with your dr. - mine was very considerate of where he placed it and it's just under my ribcage) and there is a cathetar that goes around your side and connects to a port in the spine. Mine has to be refilled about every 60 days. They insert a special needle into the pump and remove the remaining morphine (there are no preservatives added so they have to drain it each time) and then refill it. It's not very painful, less than having blood drawn, as long as you have a good tech..

Hope this helps you out some and again, any questions, just post and I'll be happy to help whatever way I can.

Good luck to you and your hubby!

Last edited by charliecat31; 07-25-2006 at 01:14 PM.

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