Syringe drivers (also known as pumps)

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Syringe Drivers

In many cases, it will be the family who become aware of any issues with the device itself or that the medicines are not controlling the patient's symptoms. The needle, or soft plastic cannula, is usually placed in the upper arm, leg or abdomen.

Managing breakthrough symptoms First check that the medicines are being delivered effectively via the syringe driver. For vomiting secondary to opiates, uraemia, hypercalcaemia and intestinal obstruction.

For example, someone might have antiemetics anti-sickness medicines in a syringe pump to manage nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy. Your nurse will supply batteries and you should be left with a spare one.

Larger volume syringes should be used for medicines that will require more ampoules to be combined to achieve the total daily dose, e. Prescribe the doses of the subcutaneous medicines to cover a hour period.

Syringe pumps

Used in bowel spasm or ureteric colic. It's as if she's on the other side of a thin curtain bit difficult to explain.

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What is a syringe driver

If a syringe pump is set up, will the patient die sooner? Do not position the pump in sunlight or anywhere it can get too hot.

Chlorpromazine Prochlorperazine Diazepam. They will also change the cannula regularly. Join the discussion on the forums.

Similar documentation is recommended for patients who are receiving care at home. Anti-inflammatory drugs like diclofenac, and muscle relaxants such as midazolam are also sometimes used for pain. Prescribe one sixth of total hour dose for breakthrough pain. Lost my mum one year ago today. The patient should ideally be reviewed every day so that medicine doses can be adjusted according to their needs.

She couldn't have taken painkillers by mouth. For details see our conditions. If the patient's symptoms remain uncontrolled despite an increase in dose, consider an alternative medicine e. Pain is experienced by most patients with advanced cancer.

The Palliative Care Knowledge Zone is not intended for use by people living with a terminal illness or their family and friends, who should access our information for the public. Your syringe driver will be set up for you by your doctor or nurse.

Physical incompatibility usually results in changes in the solution that can be observed such as discolouration, clouding or precipitation of crystals or particles. They allow continuous subcutaneous administration of medicines to enable effective symptom control when medicines given by other routes are inappropriate or no longer effective.

When and how to use a syringe driver in palliative care

They are a safe and effective way to give medicines for symptoms such as pain, nausea and vomiting, seizures, agitation and respiratory secretions. But there was no other way to go forward. Midazolam can be used to control seizures as well as for sedation. When an infusion is due to be changed, a delay of an hour or two should not cause problems if the patient's symptoms are well controlled.

Guidelines for the use of subcutaneous medications in palliative care for adults - primary care and hospices. Indications for use of a syringe driver Continuous subcutaneous administration of medicines using a syringe driver often becomes necessary for the control of symptoms during palliative care. Syringe pumps are often placed in a clear plastic, locked box. Some people just use them for a short time to manage their symptoms.

Rectal administration can be a challenge for carers, both physically and emotionally. The risk of precipitation can be minimised by using sterile water as the diluent and by maximising the total volume of the solution in the syringe, i. Patients being cared for at home should ideally have a daily visit from a health professional for review of symptom control and monitoring of the infusion. Your doctor or specialist nurse will prescribe the medicines that will best manage your symptoms. The alarm will go off if there is a problem with the syringe driver.

Also used as anticonvulsant. The support line is now closed Find out more about our support line. This should occur at least every four hours when patients are in a hospice or residential aged care facility. An alarm may just mean it needs a new battery. Disclaimer This information is not intended to replace any training, national or local guidelines, or advice from other health or social care professionals.

Medicines for different symptoms Setting up a syringe driver. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. Come back and keep us posted and I'm sure if you have any more questions we will try and answer them for you.

If it stops working If the machine stops working, don't worry as the effect of the medicines will continue for a while. Compatibility of medicines When more than one medicine is used in an infusion solution there is a risk that they may not be compatible, either chemically or physically. This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Read more about feeling sick and vomiting. Syringe drivers are merely a way of administering drugs in a continuous and controlled way - they don't make the drugs work any differently than taking them orally or by other injection routes.

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Indicate the prescription is for a syringe driver. In this case, a syringe driver is often the best way to give them medicines to help them feel more comfortable. Taking care with your syringe driver. Syringe drivers You might have a syringe driver for medicines to help manage pain, sickness, fits, call of duty 4 video card or driver doesnt agitation or breathing problems.