View Full Version : Baclofen Pump

07-04-2013, 11:59 PM
After surgery (fusion T4-L1) the stifness in my back muscles became worse and I developed tightness in muscles of legs and abs. My pain doctor wants to try a baclofen pump to help relax the muscles. Anybody has done that?

07-05-2013, 12:38 PM
I haven't had one, but my former pain doctor wanted to put one in with morphine. It's the same pump. He said that it's easier to place the pump in unfused people. He had a 16 year old patient that had the pump. He couldn't get it where he wanted it placed because of the fusion mass, so had to place it lower. The girl still had pain and had to rely on oral pain meds despite the pump.

I, personally, take 60mg of baclofen orally per day. It helps tremendously with the muscle spasms. You can't just start out at that dose. You have to titer up to it. It will make you incredibly sleepy if you start too high. Your body adjust to the "sleepy" part. The great thing about baclofen is that supposedly your body doesn't get used to the muscle relaxant effects. This means that you don't have to keep upping your dose once you get to a safe and effective dose for you. It does make it hard to pee. That's the only bad side effect that I've had. I manage just fine, though.

Other things that I do for muscle spasticity (I've been diagnosed with dystonia - a muscle disorder that causes severe spasms) is Botox injections into the really hard muscles. For the muscles that tighten up and cause pain but are not completely rigid, I get trigger point injections. It's a lifesaver. It has all but eliminated the horrible pain I used to get between my shoulder blades. I'm weaning off of my narcotic pain meds as of now because this pain is so much better.

I will caution that it's not an instant relief. It's taken over a year or more to get to this point, adding one treatment at a time. But it's worth the time and effort for the relief.

I hope this is helpful. IF you do get the pump, I for one, would be greatly interested in your experience. The doctor told me that relatively little medication actually gets into your blood stream. That's a real plus for not having side effects. The drawback is having to get the pump refilled every so often via injection directly through your skin into the pump unit. That's not a big deal considering the number of shots I get.