Medicine Change (It’s like an oil change)


I recently had surgery changing the pump – when they change the battery, they change the pump, too.  I have the standard (40 ml) Medtronic Sychromed II pump installed in me.  It’s a little like being the bionic man.

An oil change for the pump

Typically, the pump is refilled with new medicine every three or for months.  It’s more like an oil change.  The bad (old) medicine is taken out and good (new) medicine is put in the pump.

I have a service that comes to my home and will change the medicine while I am in bed.

Surgeon’s office says new medicine

The service called me on Saturday to tell me that they would come on Monday for the pump refill.  I said that I was told at the surgeon’s office that when the surgeon changed the battery and pump, they put in new medicine.  Accordingly, on Monday someone would come, but only to check out the pump.  This is called interrogating the pump.  Thereafter, I realized that Monday would not be good for me.  I spent all weekend trying to get in touch with them to change th day to Tuesday, to no avail.

The nurse and the medicine plan to arrive

Monday came and the nurse who would change the medicine called to tell me new medication would arrive at the house and so would he.  Still trying to change the day, I explained that the surgeon’s office had told me that new medicine was put into the pump when the surgery was performed and the medicine had not arrived at the house.  He assured me that the medicine would arrive shortly and so would he.

The nurse calls the surgeon’s office and is told of the new medicine

Apparently, the medicine and he arrived in the afternoon, negating my reason to change the day to Tuesday.  When he arrived, I again told him that I was told at the surgeon’s office when I had the staples removed, that new medicine was put in the pump at the time of the surgery.  He decided to call the surgeon’s office.  He was told that new medicine was put in the pump at the time of the surgery.  He came back to the pump, interrogated the pump, and he noticed that I had a fair amount of medicine in the pump.

The nurse calls the surgeon’s office a second time and is told they are uncertain about the medicine

He again called the surgeon’s office, but this time they were uncertain whether new medicine was put in the pump at the time of the surgery.  He said that they usually put in new medicine, but might not have because I was getting such a low dose that the medicine was diluted, and they may not have had diluted Medicine  available at the time of surgery.

The nurse decides to change the medicine

In view of this uncertainty, he decided to change the medicine in the pump.  Usually, this does not hurt.  The pump has no port.  A needle is inserted into the middle of the pump.  The area of insertion is found by feeling for the depression in the pump, and with the help of a template that shows the area of insertion.  This time the needle hurt.   This was so probably, because the whole area was sensitive as a result of the recent surgery.  Anyway, he took the possibly old medicine out and put in new medicine.  I was relived when the procedure was concluded.


Usually, no bandage was used, but this time a small bandage was used.  I removed the bandage two days later.

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