Patient Information Resources

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Toronto, AL M5N 2M7
Ph: 416-483-2654
Fax: 416-483-2654

Child Orthopedics
Spine - Cervical
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

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My husband is coming home from the hospital today after having both knee joints replaced. He'll be on a pump that allows him to control his pain. Even though the doctor explained it's all programmed ahead of time, I'm concerned. First of all, my husband has a past history of drug use though he's been clean for many years. Second, he is a computer whiz. It won't take much for him to figure out how to reprogram the unit. Am I worrying for nothing?

Doctors are interested in knowing family member's concerns ahead of time. It's important for a doctor to know about a previous history of drug use or abuse. It's best to make this information available before the surgery.

Patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) is not likely to cause problems with drug addiction. The unit is programmed to allow the patient small doses of a pain medication on a regular basis. This helps keep the pain from getting out of control. Many patients don't even need oral narcotics when using the PCA.

The units can come with a locking cover. This will prevent a patient from changing the program. If changes are needed, the patient will have to return to the doctor's office. The pump reports the total amount of drug used. It also keeps track of how often the patient pushes the button and how many times a dose is given.


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