Now accepting Telehealth appointments. Schedule a virtual visit.

Pain Pump

Midwest Spine and Pain

Pain Management & Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation located in New Albany, OH serving Columbus and Central, OH

An implantable intrathecal pain pump is a device that can deliver continuous medication for people who have severe pain conditions like cancer. Jimmy Henry, MD, FAAPMR, of Midwest Spine and Pain in New Albany, Ohio, is a double board certified physician who specializes in interventional pain medicine and rehabilitation, and he finds the pain pump to be highly effective in helping patients who have disabling pain. Call Midwest Spine and Pain today to find out more.

Pain Pump Q&A

What is a pain pump?

An intrathecal pain pump device is an implantable technology that delivers painreliving medication directly to your central nervous system. Pain pumps are an effective way of treating chronic pain, especially when it’s severe and not responding to other treatment approaches.

Pain pumps might use opioid medication such as morphine, particularly for cancer pain. Dr. Henry can use a combination of painrelieving medication and other drugs, such as an anesthetic, to provide optimal pain relief.

Using a pain pump presents fewer risks than taking drugs orally, and is more effective because it targets the source of the pain. The targeted delivery system means you can get effective relief using a lower dose of medication than you’d have to take orally.

It’s always best to try noninvasive or more conservative approaches before considering pain pumps, but they can be a valuable option for people who are finding other methods ineffective.

How does a pain pump work?

An intrathecal pain pump works by delivering medication to pain receptors in your nerves and blocking the communication of pain signals from the nerves to your brain. 

Dr. Henry implants the pain pump into your abdomen and fills the reservoir in the pain pump with the most appropriate painrevlieving medication.

During the implantation procedure, Dr. Henry also inserts a slim, flexible tube called a catheter into your spinal canal. 

There’s an area around your spinal cord called the intrathecal space that’s filled with fluid. The catheter delivers medication from the pain pump into this space, where it acts on your nerves to block pain.

Dr. Henry programs the pump to deliver the right quantity of medication at specific times, so you can get round-the-clock pain relief if required. You need to have your pain pump refilled every month or so.

What conditions are pain pumps used for?

Dr. Henry finds pain pumps are particularly helpful for patients who have conditions such as:

  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)
  • Failed back surgery syndrome
  • Post-laminectomy pain syndrome
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Postherpetic neuralgia
  • Post-thoracotomy pain syndrome

Before you have a pain pump implanted, you need to undergo a trial to see if the medicine will help. Dr. Henry utilizes a bolus (single dose) of medication that helps determine if the treatment is right for you.

If the trial is successful, you can undergo permanent implantation. Dr. Henry can also replace or adjust an existing pain pump when necessary.

To find out more about whether a pain pump would be right for you, call Midwest Spine and Pain today, or head over to Learn More!