Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Pain Pump Implant Update

patwhite101ppatwhite101 Posts: 1,213
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:46 AM in Pain Management
I have had my pain pump 8 weeks now and I am so very happy with the pain relief it is giving me.
I no longer have to wear the hot binder and am off all restrictions. I can bend, twist and reach over my head. I also no longer drop everything I pick up now that I can bend over and pick it up!LOL
The down side to my pain pump is the size. It is much larger than the battery of the SCS and it does protrude. I will not be able to wear zip up jeans again because of my pain pump but that is no biggie. Most of my slacks are draw string anyway and they are no problem.
Also the pump does not take care of pain spikes. It only takes care of your normal level of pain. I have spikes when stressed or there is a change in the weather. I must rely on oral pain meds for these spikes. But there is a hand held remote that allows you to give yourself an extra dose of meds when needed. It only allows a certain amount a day then it locks you out so someone can't keep giving them selves dose after dose. The device also keeps track of how much meds you have used and changes the date of your refills as needed. My Doctor is trying to get one for me.
My life is returning to normal agin.
I can now do most everything I use to do, even use my riding mower to mow my lawn something I have not been able to do for several years now!!
Now the very best thing.....I am going back to work!!
I weep for joy remembering how my life use to be and how it it now is.
Life is GOOD!!
How I wish everyone on here could have a life like I now have.
Cheers :H
Patsy W


  • Patsy,

    Wow! I love hearing 'good endings' or results, and yours certainly qualifies! Good for you. :) So happy to see 'life' returned! *HUGZ*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • j.howiejj.howie Brentwood, Ca., USAPosts: 1,730
    It's about time! You were so miserable for so long. I'm glad they have finnaly got you something that works for you.
    Click my name to see my Medical history
    You get what you get, not what you deserve......I stole that from Susan (rip)
    Today is yours to embrace........ for tomorrow, who knows what might be starring you in the face!
  • It is so great to hear the good news from chronic pain sufferers. Wishing you a much happier, healthier future with your new "gear"!

  • I'm happy for you that you're finally getting pain relief and back to a normal life. So glad you're able to work now. Thanks for the positive update on how you're doing. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • for your good wishes. How I wish I could pass along my pain relief to everyone on here.
    I have started back to work at last!! I never thought I would see this day.
    My advice to anyine who is thinking about a pain pump implant is to go for it. All you have to loose is your pain.
    Also do youe homework on the Neurosurgeon who will be doing your trial and your implant. I recommend that you have a Neurosurgeon because they know all about the nerves. Make sure they have plenty of experience doing pump implants.
    If you have flair up's or spikes in your pain as I do, ask your surgeon about a PTM. It is a hand held device that you can use to give yourself and extra dose of pain meds through your pump to help with the pain spike. Pain pumps only take care of your normal level of pain. Insurance companies do not want to pay for these after your implant but will pay for one if included with the surgery.
    Also find out how long your trial will be. Some Doctors only give one shot of meds, some send you home with am external pump, some try 3 or 4 shots while you are in the hospital. I was in the hospital 3 days while my Surgeon tried different strengths of Diladuid every 24 hours. If you can't take Morphine there are other pain meds that can be used..Diladuid being one of them. They can also include other meds with the pain meds for other problems you may have such as spasticity.
    The great thing about pain pumps is that they only use a tiny amount of pain meds to get the same results that large doses of oral meds may give you. It does not go through your system like oral meds do so much fewer side effects. I have no side effects at all. I am not drowsy and I do not feel "doped up" like some oral meds make you feel.
    Pain pumps are not as dangerous as some will have you think. Yes, problems can develope and I do not want to down play them. If anyone would like a list of these PM me amd I will be happy to let you know what they are. This is much to long now. I hate reading long comments myself so I am going to shut up now before I go overboard.
    Thanks to everyone who have been such a help to me these past few years.
    Hugsssss >:D<
    Patsy W
  • Wow, I'm so glad to hear your story. I go in shortly for my test. Where did they put your pump? The back or stomach?
  • Thanks Patsy, All the info you have been sharing with your experiences so far with the pump are exactly what I am looking for. I am looking forward to getting the pump now instead of fearing it. I actually am having hope again because of you and others like you that have shared their experiences. To go back to work is huge. It sounds like you have your life back. That is all most of us want along with being in less pain. I was well prepared when I went to my PM appointment this month. I think I shocked them with all my questions about the pump and I have more for next month. I met a woman at PM who has a pump (only for 2 months) and was willing to answer questions for me. I was surprised to see that her pump was implanted in the upper buttock area though. I was thinking it would have been up front but the Dr. said it was based on each individual and their body fat. I asked about a binder and none is used. I guess I will have to make my own because it makes sense to me from what you and others have said. I am so looking forward to getting a pump in January and wish it were sooner now. Please keep us posted and thanks again. You have really been of great help. I am so happy that you have your life back again. Beth
  • My pump is in my side just below my rib cage. It's rare that they put them in the back because of their size and they do protrude a bit. I have the larger size that does not have to be refilled that often. I am sure they would use the smaller if they implanted it in the back. Goodness...it would bump on things back there I would think.
    My biggesr fear when I had my trial was that I would get a spinal leak headache but I did not or when I had my permanent implant. Laying down and drinking caffene helps those or they can do a blood patch that will stop it.
    If you can't take Morphine or it does not work for you ask them to try Diladuid. I have no side effects at all with the Diladuid. I am not even constipated with it.
    Best of luck to you both. I just know you will be very happy with your pain pump. It has saved my life. Be patient with it. It does take time to get it asjusted up enough to get your pain down to a level you can live with. You will be started out on a low dose and slowly increased up until you reach that "magic" number. But you will feel instant relief. How much depends on the dose you are given.
    Please keep us posted. You can PM me with any questions you may have.
    Cheers :H
    Patsy W
  • Wow, have you made me feel better about things. How long are you layed up afterwards?
  • oh, Patsy, your story is so promising...I just cannot decide if I want to go thru it or not. I just see so many mixed reviews...but I hate taking all this medicine and I'm basically maxed out on my meds, there is no where for me to go unless i switched meds. I don't know what to do. I am not having surgery on my back, so I am a candidate for the pump. I'm just so confused...but I'm so thankful for your testimony that you are sharing.
  • Patsy, I'm really confused on the placement of the pain pump. It is pretty large (like a measering tape), & can't help to feel as you, that it would be getting in the way. Guess I need to talk to the doctor more.
  • Pain Pumps are about the size of a hocky puck and you can tell them where you want it placed, right or left side. Choose the side you do not sleep on. I sleep on my back so I did not care which side they put it on.
    There is nothing to fear from having a trial or the implant. The only time you hear from someone with a pain pump is if something goes wrong. Others are busy living their lives, working etc. Compared to the number of people with pain pumps the number you hear from are very few.
    But as with any implant things can go wrong but the pump it's self has safty features built in. I never worry about mine....never even think of it. All I care about is that I have it and it is working. I would be in agony without it.
    I have only had my pump a few months and am still getting increases because my Doctor only gives small increases at a time but with 3 oral pain pills a day along with my pump I am good to go about my business. Before I was taking Oxycodone every 4 hours and still in pain! I am self employed and back to work because I can work at my own pace.
    Oops...sorry for the long post.
    Cheers :H
    Patsy W
  • How often I check up on my friends...

    I never saw this till now and it was started in August :OO L)

    I am so glad to read it and very happy for you! <:P

  • Determining whether an implantable drug pump may be a good option for pain management is a complex process. The pain management process is used to relieve chronic pain. Intrathecal pump treatment for patients who have failed conservative way to help and surgery is unlikely to help.There is used for certain medical and other conditions that you are a drug pump implanted will have to stop that.
  • Hi PetterHarry5, I was following everything you were saying on your post until the last sentence and then I was unable to understand exactly what you were saying or what you meant. I am one of those people who had surgery that failed and Pain Mgmt has pretty much tried everything to help relief the pain to no avail. So I am interested in the Intrathecal Pump versus doing oral meds any longer. So what did your last sentence mean?
  • PetterHarry: I am sorry but your post makes no sense to me either. That last sentence really threw me.
    What do you mean? (I am sorry but I am a bit thick headed today.)

    Perhaps you will be kind enough to log in again and explain exactly what you mean.(scratching head)

    A lot of people are interested in these threads about pain pumps so feel free to join in if you have a pain pump implant or are thinking about having one, or have some first hand knowledge of one.

    Thanks :H
    Patsy W
  • Take a look at the fact that a URL had been initially placed in petterharry5's signature. This is normally a good indicator that the individual behind the name was here simply to spam the forum. I wouldn't get too worked up over the post.

  • also regarding the pain pump. But, after 6 failed surgereys, it's all I have left. If the pump doesn't work, I'm headed for another big fusion. And I don't want to do that. I go in Nov. 30th for the test stay. Scared, & looking forward to it. I go in the 14th to discuss what I have to do after it's installed.
  • Pat - I am so very happy for you! WTG, enjoy!
  • When do you get your pain pump installed? I go in next week. The trial went very well, so hopefull.
  • Since my 1st back surgery, my feet have given me real problems. Has anyone else had this problem?
  • Sorry I have missed your questions. I do not log in here often.
    I had my pump implanted in June of this year and am very happy with it. I love the pain relief it has given me. It has saved my life.

    Have you had your trial yet? If so...how did it go?

    I also have a LOT of foot pain, both feet. They do not bother me as much now unless I have a flare up in my pain. Pain pumps only take care of your normal pain level. My flare ups are not as bad now as they use to be. The pain is not as severe.

    I am still going in every 2 weeks for an increase in my pump meds. My Doctor only gives tiny increases each time, some gives larger ones but not as often.

    Before my pump implant I was taking 6 oral pain pills a day(Oxycodone) I am now down to 3 a day sometimes 2. My Doctor promised me I would be off ALL oral pain meds before long and I believe hem.

    Good Luck
    Patsy W
  • I'm glad to hear that the foot pain may be releived by the pump. The feet have gotten worse lately. I go in Dec. 14th to have the pump put in. I had lots of relief from the trial, so hoping the real thing works. Sorry you still have so much pain, maybe they will find the right combination for you soon.
  • I am so happy to hear you will be getting your permanent implant. I know you will be happy with the pain relief.
    The key to a pain pump is patients. It will take time to get the pump up to the "magic number" that will bring your pain down to a level you can live with.
    You will also be going in for increases just as I am until you reach your "magic number". How much of an increase you will get is up to your Doctor. My Doctor just gives tiny increases(10%) each time.

    The only time I have any severe pain is when I have a flare up and oral meds takes care of most of it. When my pain is at it's "normal" level I do not always need oral meds. I am down from 6 Oxycodone a day to 3 now.

    If you had a good trial the permanant implant will be the same because they will start you out on the same dose. In 6 weeks you should be able to go in for an increase if you feel you need one.

    When you go in, or before you go, in remember to ask your Doctor about a PTM!! It is a hand held device that you can use to give yourself an extra dose of meds through your pump. It's important that you get one when you have the permanent implant because the insurance will pay for one then but not after.
    The Doctor sets the PTM so you can just give yourself a certain(sp?) number of doses a day....you can not over dose with it. It is great for flare ups, if you have them like I do.

    Very best of luck to you. The 14th will be your birthday!! You are going to have a "new life" then.
    Please post when you get your implant. More people with pain pumps needs to start posting here.

    Cheers :H
    Patsy W
  • Hi Patsy,
    I am glad to see that you are keeping your thread updated. I appreciate hearing about your progress for so many reasons. I am cheering you on!
  • Patsy, you have given me so much information, & I can't can tell you what it has meant to me. I did talk with my doctor about the hand held device, & I guess he gives one to all his patients. Thanks again to your info, I knew to ask him. I am nervous, but anxious to get it & put an end to all this pain. I go in Tues. & I will let you know how it goes. Thanks again Patsy.
  • Hello everyone!! I've been reading up about you Silverfox and want to congratulate on your decision. As Patsy has said this is the best thing a person in our shoes can do. I have had my morphine pump for a little over two years now. I never realized how much pain I was "sucking up" until I didn't have it any more. The day of my trial I felt like I could do cartwheels down the halls of the hospital. Not only was I out of paralyzing pain but I knew there was hope. I want you to be patient (sp?) because it really does take time to get to that magic number. I had to go a little slower with my increases because they were messing with my head too much so it took longer for my body to regulate. A few things to keep in mind for the future, have a practiced explanation for how the pump works, unfortunately, some people, including medical personnal, think we are all junkies when they hear the word morphine. try to explain that the amount we recieve is tiny because it is intrathecal. Also, make sure you have a very good relationship with your pain dr. You'll be seeing a lot of him/her. keep us posted!!! here's to life. littlefish
  • Silverfox.....I am so happy I was able to help you in some small ways. Please try not to be nervous. My surgery was very easy on me...I did have a few days I had some pain from the implant but it was easily managed with oral pain meds. Did I mention that you will need a reacher/grabber? I found myself using mine several times a day. I managed to drop everything I picked up. I live alone so there was no one to go behind me picking up stuff.

    Jackie....I am happy you are finding usefull information here. From the number of reads this post is still getting it appears a number of people are interested in pain pumps. And for that reason I plan to continue posting about my pump.

    Littlefish....Thank you for your comment. It's always great to hear from another pumpster. I was so happy to hear you are doing well with your. I have Diladuid in mine and have never had any problems with the medication at all. It has not even caused me to be constipated which is common with pain medications. But we are all different and our bodies react differently to medications.

    Best of luck to you tomorrow Silverfox. We all will be thinking of you.

    Cheers to All :H
    Patsy W
  • for your help. It's great to know there are people out there willing to take there time to help others. I have most of the same problems you have. Did you ready where Patsy mentioned the "grabber"? You need to get 1 or 2. I have had 2 for yrs. 1 in the bedroom & 1 in the kitchen. You don't realize how many times a day you bend over to pick up something. For about $15, they are worth $100's.
  • Oh my gosh!! Patsy I am so HAPPY for you!!!! I had tears in my eyes when I read that you felt good enough to go back to work. It has been such a long road for you and you have certainly given me hope. I keep all of the spineys on here in my prayers every day. So glad to see for sure that the prayers are working!!! :-)

    I haven't been on here in forever. I guess because I try so hard to focus on things that have nothing at all to do with my back!! But here I am a year and a half after my surgery and still miserable. I spend most of my days reclined in the hospital bed that has been in my master bedroom since my two surgeries in August 09. I am in constant pain and taking far more pain meds than I am comfortable with. MS Contin 45mg twice a day and a total of 8 Norco 10/325. Plus Cymbalta, Zanaflex and Lyrica. My pain Doc is wonderful and she works very hard with me to strike a balance between controlling my pain but not forcing me to take stronger drugs. I have tried Oxy and percocet and didnt think that they provided enough pain relief for as drugged as I felt. She has offered to let me try fentanyl patches but I am worried that will be the same result. And I really don't want to be on the strong of a drug in such a high dose.
    So....she is strongly urging me to consider the Pain Pump. Which I have also been resistant to. At least until I came on here and read that your pump gave you back your life!! I am going to call her tomorrow and tell her to go ahead and set up the consult.
    Thank you so much for sharing your story on here so that you can help others with this tough decision.
Sign In or Register to comment.