Surgery: What to Expect – Implanting the Drug Pump

Intrathecal drug delivery

Detail - Intrathecal drug delivery

If you and your doctor decide to use a drug pump as part of your pain management plan, you will need a surgery to implant the system.

Before the surgery, you and your doctor will decide where to position the pump for your comfort. The surgery takes approximately 1 to 3 hours.

On the day of the surgery, you will receive local or general anaesthesia. Once you are “under” the anaesthetic, your surgeon will:

  • Make an incision and form a pocket to hold the pump (usually in the abdomen)
  • Create a second incision on your back for the catheter
  • Create a small tunnel just below the skin to pass the catheter through
  • Position the pump and catheter

Once the pump and catheter are in place, the incisions are closed and the surgery is complete. The length of your hospital stay will vary depending on your doctor’s preference and hospital procedures.

Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.

Last updated: 27 Sep 2010

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