What is a chemotherapy pump?

Chemotherapy drugs are sometimes given through an IV cannula, which is connected to a chemotherapy pump.

A chemotherapy pump, also called a chemotherapy pump or infusion pump, is a medical device that injects chemotherapy drugs intravenously into a patient’s bloodstream at a set rate. These pumps are commonly used in the treatment of cancer, either alone or in combination with other cancer treatments such as radiation therapy or surgery. They are useful for treatments that require a constant stream of small, individual doses of a drug, because they can do this automatically and precisely in a way that would be impractical if a doctor or nurse had to manually administer each individual dose. Some chemotherapy pumps are portable, worn by the patient or implanted in their body and therefore allow chemotherapy to be administered with less disruption to the patient’s daily life.

Chemotherapy pumps play an important role in chemotherapy infusions as they ensure that the drugs reach the patient at the proper speed.

An external chemotherapy pump delivers chemotherapy drugs to the patient through a flexible tube. This can be done through a tube called a cannula that enters a blood vessel in the patient’s hand or arm, or through a catheter inserted into a blood vessel in the chest, called a central catheter. The pump can be a device in a hospital, in which case the patient will need to visit the hospital for each treatment or stay there for an extended period of time, or a device that the patient can take home. Some modern chemotherapy pumps are small enough that they can be carried with the patient in a bag or holster, allowing the patient to receive chemotherapy pump treatment while carrying out normal activities.

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As chemotherapy progresses, many patients experience significant hair loss and some develop painful sores inside the mouth.

An internal chemotherapy pump is a surgically implanted device that is placed inside the body, usually just under the skin of the chest. The pump contains a reservoir of the patient’s chemotherapy drugs, which it pumps through the central line catheter at appropriate times. Some internal chemotherapy pumps, used to treat liver cancer, are implanted under the skin in the abdomen and pump chemotherapy drugs directly into the hepatic artery to the liver, concentrating treatment on the affected area and allowing treatment to be given at lower levels. of drugs and fewer side effects. Surgery to implant this type of device, called a hepatic artery infusion pump, is a little more involved and usually includes surgical removal of the patient’s gallbladder. Both types of pumps contain an internal reservoir that stores the medication, which must be replenished periodically.

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