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Pain Management

Patient Controlled Analgesia

Patient Controlled Analgesia (PCA) is a method of analgesia using intravenous narcotics delivered via a pump where you control when you get the medication. Your anesthesiologist will order the pump programmed with the narcotic most suited to your physiology and surgery and will ensure that it is programmed such that your safety and comfort are maximized.

In essence, the pump will deliver medicine to you via your intravenous whenever you push the button that is given to you. The idea is to ensure that you are getting the pain medication early, with no waiting for someone else to come and give you the medicine. The machine ensures that you cannot give yourself too much medication. Once this PCA is ordered for you; it also means you will be seen once or twice each day by an anesthesiologist specializing in post-operative pain and, also, a clinical nurse specialist in pain management who works with the Acute Pain Service.

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