Specialists in Pain Pump Procedures in Houston and Victoria, TX

Doctor Choudhri been regularly performing pain pump trial and pain pump implant procedures in Houston and Victoria, TX for over 13 years with leading manufacturers such as Medtronic, Boston Scientific, and Abbott Labs.  We regularly collaborate and team directly with medical device representatives to stay abreast of the latest advances. 

When considering a pain pump, it’s essential to choose an experienced specialist for accurate catheter placement, minimal post-operative pain, and maximum effectiveness.  You can trust in our experience and maturity in performing this outpatient procedure.

Pain pumps are one of the many modalities we provide for chronic pain management.  If you have questions and would like to discuss whether a pain pump is right for you, call our office for a consultation or use the contact form on this page.  We can help you determine if a pain pump is the right solution or if another modality will be more effective for your specific needs. 

Frequently Asked Questions about Pain Pumps


Do you need to have a pain pump trial first before an implant?

A pain pump trial is generally recommended before implanting a pain pump. A consultation is needed to determine if a pain pump trial is necessary. The trial uses the exact same pain pump but is not implanted under your skin. During the trial adjustments may be made to the pain pump medication dosage to optimize its efficacy . This will also give you the chance to determine if the pain pump is providing sufficient pain relief before implanting the pain pump.

If the trial is not successful, other pain management options can be explored with your pain specialist.


What type of anesthesia will I receive for a pain pump trial?

For a pain pump trial we provide the option to have the procedure performed under IV sedation to keep you asleep during the entire procedure or with a local anesthetic.

It is important. to note that a pain pump trial requires no incisions during the procedure and it is not surgery. A catheter is placed within the epidural space using a small needle and then connected to your external pump.


Can a pain pump be removed once implanted?

Yes, your implanted pump can be removed if you don't need the pump any more or you no longer wish to use it.


How do I know if I am a good candidate for a pain pump?

Your pain specialist is the best person to answer this question for you based on your specific needs. We will evaluate your treatment options and your medical history to evaluate what the best course is for you.

A pain pump trial is usually performed to evaluate whether a pain pump implant will provide you with the best results before proceeding with an implant.


What happens if I'm not satisfied with the results of my pain pump trial?

The goal of a pain pump trial is to validate whether a pain pump will meet your pain management needs before implanting it more permanently. During this period the parameters and programming of the pain pump can be optimized to configure it to your specific needs. If the pain pump doesn't meet your needs then a simple procedure to remove the pain pump trial is performed. After this, alternative pain management options can be considered with your pain specialist, such as a spinal cord stimulator. If the pain pump does meeting your needs, then your next procedure will be minimally invasive surgery to implant the pain pump.

The optimal placement of the catheter is important to ensure the maximum potential benefit of the pain pump and to maximize the success of a pain pump trial. Although we all share the same anatomy, every person still has differences and this is where experience really matters.


How often is a refill required for a pain pump?

A pain pump delivers medication on a preprogrammed basis. Since every patients medication delivery requirements are uniquely tailored to their needs, the time required before you need to return for a pain pump refill varies. Your pain specialist will let you know when. you need to return for a refill. You should ensure that you return for a refill in a timely manner as indicated by your specialist so that your pain pump continues to operate with an adequate supply of medication.

We regularly perform pain pump refills for patients that have had a pain pump implant completed by us or anyone else. Refilling your pain pump is a simple, non-invasive procedure and can be completed by a qualified nurse practitioner that has been trained in refilling pain pumps.


What are the differences between an intrathecal pain pump and a spinal cord stimulator?

An intrathecal pain pump, also known as a spinal infusion pain pump and a spinal cord stimulator are both implantable medical devices for long term pain management. The method they use to deliver pain relief differs. A pain pump delivers medication directly to the intrathecal space to manage chronic pain.

The intrathecal space is the space surrounding the spinal cord and the brainstem that is filled with cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Because the medication delivered by the pain pump is delivered directly to the intrathecal space, it can provide pain relief with lower doses of medication and fewer side effects compared to oral medications, which must be absorbed through the digestive system and distributed throughout the body.

A spinal cord stimulator delivers electrical impulses to the spinal cord through the leads, which interfere with the pain signals that are traveling up the spinal cord to the brain. The electrical impulses stimulate the nerves in the spinal cord, which can help reduce or eliminate the perception of pain. The patient can adjust the level of stimulation using a remote control, which allows them to customize the level of pain relief they receive at different times of the day or during different activities. A spinal cord stimulator doesn't use medication like a pain pump. Adjustments to a pain pump must normally be completed by a qualified medical practitioner.

We have been performing both spinal cord stimulator trials and implants as well. as pain pump trials and implants for many years. We will discuss the specifics of your particular chronic pain case before determining whether a spinal cord stimulator, pain pump, or other form of treatment is the best option for you.


What are potential risks and side effects from a pain pump?

Like any medical procedure, the use of a pain pump to manage chronic pain carries some risks. Some of the potential side effects of pain pumps include:

  1. Infection: Infection is a potential complication of any surgical procedure, including the implantation of a pain pump. Signs of infection around the pump site may include redness, swelling, tenderness, and fever.
  2. Bleeding: Bleeding is a risk during the implantation of the pain pump, and patients may experience bruising or bleeding at the insertion site.
  3. Catheter or pump malfunction: The catheter or pump may malfunction, which could cause a decrease or increase in the amount of medication being delivered or other problems with the pump's functioning.
  4. Allergic reactions: Some patients may experience an allergic reaction to the medication being delivered by the pain pump.
  5. Nausea, vomiting, or other medication side effects: The medication being delivered by the pain pump can cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, dizziness, or constipation.
  6. Headache: Some patients may experience headaches as a side effect of the pain pump.
  7. Device migration or dislodgment: The pain pump or catheter may move or become dislodged, which could affect the effectiveness of the device.

We will discuss potential side effects and risks and any other concerns you have before undergoing a pain pump procedure, or any procedure for that matter. Your individual medical history and other considerations will inform and help guide us in making informed decisions on which pain treatment option is best for you.

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