Patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) has become quite an effective way to treat pain after surgery. The PCA is a unit that the patient can wear that dispenses medication through an intravenous line (IV), which is inserted into the patient’s hand or arm. The medication can then be controlled by a push button on the unit.
The PCA has many benefits. Patients tend to feel more comfortable knowing that they are in control of their medication. The doctor can program the unit for the correct amount of dosage based on the patient’s weight. The PCA is available at all times and is used for a short-term controlled basis. Medication is released slowly, which prevents side effects such as sleepiness and weakness. The pain control is released consistently and can be used by both adults and children.
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