Intrathecal Baclofen Pump
UW Health neurosurgeons in Madison, Wisconsin, offer intrathecal baclofen pump therapy as a method of controlling spasticity, dystonia and other muscle movement problems, and easing pain in adult and child patients.
What is the intrathecal baclofen pump?
The intrathecal baclofen pump is simply a system for delivering baclofen, a medicine that relaxes excessive muscle movements and severe muscle tightening.
The pump is three inches in diameter and ¾-inch thick. It runs on batteries that last five to seven years. A tiny catheter is attached to the pump and tunneled beneath the patient's skin around to the back, then into the spinal fluid. The pump is programmed via an external computer to deliver specific doses of medication into the spinal fluid.
The placement of the pump is a surgical procedure that lasts one to two hours.
Benefits of Intrathecal Baclofen Pump
Patients may realize the following benefits:
- Increased physical comfort
- Patients are easier to care for
- Improved quality-of-life for patient and parent/caregiver
- Improved speech and function in arms and legs in approximately 1/3 of patients