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Chemo Pump

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Chemo Pump

Postby Bev G » Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:08 am

Hello all

I suppose I could wait a couple of days to find this out, but after reading SkiFletch's message about the port (you go SkiFletch, will be thinking about you on Wednesday) it made me think about chemo pumps. What are THEY like? Are they giant? If anyone knows what insulin pumps are like (I've used one for over 20 year, have had type1 diabetes for 44 years) are they small like those? How can you sleep with them? Do you change the chemo syringe yourself or have to keep running back to your MD? Any information would be gratefully welcomed. Thanks! Bev
58 yo Type1 DM 48 years
12/09 Stage IV 2/22 nodes + liver met, colon resec
3 tx FOLFIRI, liver resec 4/10
9/10 6 mos off chemo, Neg PET&CTC CEA nl
2/11 finished total 10 rounds chemo

9/13 ^17th clean PET/CT NED for now
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby KellyBelle » Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:39 pm

My pump was about 4" x 8" and I wore it in a fanny pack around my waist. I slept with it around my waist (just put it over my pj's or gown); the only time I took it off was to shower, and then I hung it on a hook right outside the shower. It stayed on for 48 hours continuously, until I went back to the infusion suite to have it removed --it would start beeping about an hour before it ran out, if I recall. I wouldn't see the pump again until my next cycle. I have read here that some people get their's removed at home by a visiting nurse. I never did anything to it myself and never had any problems with it (except that I hated it).
Diagnosed March, 2008
Stage IIIC
Colo-Anal Reconstructive Surgery April, 2008
Finished Folfox treatment November, 2008
NED! December 2008
NED! December 2011

Life is what we make it, always has been, always will be.
~Grandma Moses
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby JohnnyT » Mon Jan 11, 2010 1:09 pm

Same here. I wore my chemo pump in a fanny pack. At night I'd take the fanny pack off and hang it over the bed post. I put a bathroom mat down on the floor alongside the bed with the rubber side facing up so that when I stepped onto it, it would remind me that I had to take the fanny pack off the bed post so I could go to the bathroom.
I have a port and it's a small needle that's flush against the port with a sterile covering over it.
Hope everything goes well for you.
John
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby ShawnB » Mon Jan 11, 2010 1:31 pm

I've used both an electronic pump and what's called the Intermate baxter pump. I have to say that I prefer the baxter pump. It is less intrusive and easier to manage. The nurses at Sloan call it the baby bottle because that's what it looks like. It is gravity fed so there is no noise or beeping. The electronic one was a real PITA for me. I hated the thing. The bottle is light weight and liek I said easier to manage, You can take it right into the shower with you.
DX 3/30/09 Stage IV Rectal
Multiple Mets to Liver
10 rounds Folfox /w Avastin and Trial AMG-655
HAI Pump impalnt 10/09
Rectum resection 10/09 w/ temp ileostomy
Folfiri w/ avastin 13 rounds scheduled.
Married w/ a 2.5 yo daughter
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby Gaelen » Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:39 pm

Pumps come in all shapes and sizes - I've used 4x8 rectangular pumps, used the MSKCC 'baby bottle' pump (which is body-heat regulated, not gravity-fed, so it can administer the dose too fast if you are prone to hot flashes on chemo--thus, my docs used it only once on me!) and used the baton-shaped Ambit pumps last year which IMO were the best compromise between them all -- more reliable and used fewer batteries than the Baxter pumps, smaller and easier to carry/sleep with.
Be in harmony with your expectations. - Life Out Loud
4/04: dx'd @48 StageIV RectalCA w/9 liver mets. 8 chemos, 4 surgeries, last remission 34 mos.
2/11 recurrence R lung, spinal bone mets - chemo, RFA lung mets
4/12 stopped treatment
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby Candyys03 » Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:51 pm

Bev,
I had a box, the 4x8, battery operated one.They give you extra batteries.It was not a fanny pack but like a little shoulder purse but I'm sure you could tighten the strap and wear it as a fanny pack or put it in a fanny pack.I would get it from Monday to Wednesday and it was hooked up to my picc line in my arm(I have never had a port).It starts to beep when it gets low but that doesn't mean that its out of stuff you usually have about an hour left.It will also beep if you get a kink or air bubble in the line.They can show you how to stop the beeping and reset it.Sponge bath or shower so it doesn't get wet.The cord is long enough (sometimes too long) that you can leave it outside the shower. When I went to the bathroom I had a special place I would put it.If you put in the same place each time you won't forget it.
1.NEVER DROP IT IN THE TOILET!(It Happens.)
At night I would place it on a pillow on the bed or on a mat on the floor.You get used to it so you can sleep and the chemo makes you tired. You just can't roll over as easily without moving the cord or box.I'm sure this would be much easier if it were a fanny pack.
2.Never get the cord/line caught in a shower door, dishwasher door,fridge door,car door,any door,etc...(It Happens.)
It will become your new buddy.
Candy
DX8/0642yrIVCCmtsliver
9/06opcol+lymps
07oxy
08livernonop
08iri+erb
1/09opliver
NED11m
12/09lungmts
3/10livermts
NED7m
2/11lungmts
4/11NED3m
5/2Xel
9/26lungop
NED6m
3/12lungmtsirierb
11/27avas+ox
7/13Stivarga
10/28irierb
1/17
caringbridge.orgcandyllamas
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby jscho » Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:52 pm

I am familiar with both insulin pumps and the 5-FU pumps that use body temperature to control a valve. The 5-FU pumps are much bigger than insulin pumps since significantly more fluid/medicine is put into your body. The pumps that I used have a balloon that exerts a pressure on the fluid, moving it through the temperature-dependent valve. It was nice to use since it didn't have any mechanical parts and made no noise. For the FOLFOX treatments, the insertion point of the pump, in my case through a port, does not need to be changed as it is in place for 46 hours. The balloon was held in a plastic bottle, roughly the size of a 1 liter bottle, and fit into a fanny pack.

It is certainly more cumbersome than an insulin pump, but not too uncomfortable.

Hope this helps,
Jeremy
Colon cancer dx Feb. 24, 2009, T3/N2/M0
Right Hemicolectomy Feb. 26, 2009
Stage 3C: 4/19 positive nodes
High grade adenocarcinoma with tumor budding
FOLFOX6 April 15 - Oct. 1, 2009
Elective sub-total colectomy July 3, 2012 due to 2 DALMs
Currently NED
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby NWgirl » Mon Jan 11, 2010 2:53 pm

My experience was pretty much like KellyBelle's. At night you could sometimes hear a little "swish" when it was pumping the chemo through the hose, but if I just put the covers over it I couldn't hear anything. The only time it really started to bug me was when I had to wear it during radiation treatment - so I had it on 24/7 for almost 6 weeks straight. At that point I was just sick of the constant reminder of being on chemo and was very glad to have a break from it.

I'd wear the tube (that attached the pump to my port) under my shirt, so no one even knew I was wearing it.
Belle - "Don't Retreat - Reload"DX 10/07 Stage III Rectal
Surgery 11/07; 27 of 38 nodes
Perm Colostomy 8/11
12/10 recurrence lungs & LN's
VATS Jan 2011
Radiation Oct 2013
Chemo for Life
2012 Colondar Model
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby KarMel » Mon Jan 11, 2010 9:04 pm

KellyBelle wrote:My pump was about 4" x 8" and I wore it in a fanny pack around my waist. I slept with it around my waist (just put it over my pj's or gown); the only time I took it off was to shower, and then I hung it on a hook right outside the shower. It stayed on for 48 hours continuously, until I went back to the infusion suite to have it removed --it would start beeping about an hour before it ran out, if I recall. I wouldn't see the pump again until my next cycle. I have read here that some people get their's removed at home by a visiting nurse. I never did anything to it myself and never had any problems with it (except that I hated it).


I hated mine too. I bought special shirts to try to hide the bandage over my port site. I wore my pump in a little purse thing I had at home. The cancer clinic tried to give me a fanny pack, but I refused. It was big and bulky and ugly.
They have tried to give me other things , like tote bags with the name of the clinic on the side. Just what I wanted...walking around advertising I was a cancer patient.


I work in a medical office and thought one of the nurses there could have removed the pump after it started beeping, but that idea was slapped down. Something about only specially trained chemo therapy nurses were allowed to do it. Hogwash, I thought, but I obeyed and went to the clinic.
Stage IV, April 2009.
Treatments...multiple .
Currently none
"It is well, with my soul"
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby jules10100 » Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:21 pm

3. Never let your new kitten in your bedroom while your sleep with the pump. She may think the tubing is like a piece of yarn that she is supposed to play with. (This happened to me, her claws poked holes in the tubing and I woke up with chemo squirting on me)... was gonna name her chemo, but noone else thought that was a good name.

4. Never lean over the oven while taking a pie out of the oven and burn your tubing... no I didn't burn it, but almost!
RC resection 06/07 xeloda, radiation, folfox
Stage IV Lung and Liver Mets 11/08 res
Folfiri & Avas 09
2/10 lung spots Irr.Erb
Next Vectibix
Irr, Erb and Avas. for Lung spots 4/11
Folfirinox
Clinical trial Nov 11. Brain mets
Option for Chemo unknown
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby seussfan » Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:59 pm

I had the same 4x8 pump that most people are describing. I had actually tried to put it in a purse so when I worked, the kids at my school would not notice it. NOT a good idea. Nothing worse than pulling on the tubes accidentally. And it was a pain. Wearing it like a fanny pack is best.

I also kept it around my waist while sleeping. It prevents it falling off the bed. And not too be too personal - but it makes sex rather humorous!

A couple of times the alarm on it went off while I was wearing it and the help line was great. They walked me through everything I needed to do for it.
Stage 3 Colon Cancer-6 of 15 lymph nodes positive/Surgery & Dx 3-5-07/Finished Folfox4 11-28-07
Stage 0/Grade 3 Breast Cancer/Double mastectomy 5-15-09/Undergoing reconstruction
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/trishlannon
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby KellyBelle » Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:22 pm

seussfan wrote:And not too be too personal - but it makes sex rather humorous!



You're my hero! I couldn't even look at myself in the mirror with that thing on, let alone have sex!
Diagnosed March, 2008
Stage IIIC
Colo-Anal Reconstructive Surgery April, 2008
Finished Folfox treatment November, 2008
NED! December 2008
NED! December 2011

Life is what we make it, always has been, always will be.
~Grandma Moses
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby hopeful » Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:35 pm

Johnnyt, that's a great idea of putting a bath mat next to the bed so you notice it when you get up during the night. My husband sleeps with his fanny pack on a nightstand. The tube is really long. Luckily he sleeps on his back normally so it's not too big of a deal. But he has forgotten about it and almost walked away from it during the night. I'll put down a mat next time. Thank you for the great suggestion.
Caregiver to husband diagnosed 11/09 stage IIIb colon cancer
Surgery 11/5/09
12 rounds FOLFOX beginning 12/18/09
Folfox finished 6/3/10
Last scan Jan 2014
NED since Dec. 2009
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby seussfan » Thu Jan 14, 2010 7:37 pm

KellyBelle wrote:
seussfan wrote:And not too be too personal - but it makes sex rather humorous!



You're my hero! I couldn't even look at myself in the mirror with that thing on, let alone have sex!


Hey - life has to go on! :wink:
Stage 3 Colon Cancer-6 of 15 lymph nodes positive/Surgery & Dx 3-5-07/Finished Folfox4 11-28-07
Stage 0/Grade 3 Breast Cancer/Double mastectomy 5-15-09/Undergoing reconstruction
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/trishlannon
2009 Colondar Model
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Re: Chemo Pump

Postby Rotorhead » Thu Jan 14, 2010 7:44 pm

seussfan wrote:
KellyBelle wrote:
seussfan wrote:And not too be too personal - but it makes sex rather humorous!



You're my hero! I couldn't even look at myself in the mirror with that thing on, let alone have sex!


Hey - life has to go on! :wink:


Yup. I've got the qual too.
Diagnosed Stage 3 rectal cancer 11/07
chemo/rad 12/07-1/08; TME surgery 2/08
Post-surgery chemo 4/08 - 9/08 FOLFOX
CAT scan DEC 08 shows NED!
My blog: http://rotorheadsblog.blogspot.com/
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