Due to tiny veins I've been told I have to have a port put in before starting chemo. My surgery for the port insertion is Monday July 30. I'd really welcome any comments on pple who have had this done.
I had a port put in back in May and I love it. It is such a great thing to have. I get my chemo through it and also my blood draws. It was one of the best things that I ever did. For me, I had a hard time in surgery, I had to have general anesthesia for an outpatient procedure. My surgeon still gives me a hard time about it. :) Appartently I didn't sedate very well. I get a good laugh out of it now. Everything will go well for you and you will love it. When do you start your chemo? ONe thing to know, if you really don't care for needle pokes to ask for a scrip called Emla cream. It will numb your skin and you won't feel them access your port. HOpe you are doing well! Take care! Carrie
You did not say how much you already know about a port-a-cath. Like the name implies -it is a semi-permanent access to a main vein (it can be removed when no longer needed). It goes right under the skin with a short catheter in your vein. Mine is about the size of a nickle and the shape is very obvious under my skin. Mine is right below my left collar bone. Usually you are not put all the way under (anethesia) but are aware of what is going on. I was ready to go home probably in about two to three hours from time I got to Outpatient clinic. I had bruising and was sore in shoulders for a couple of days, but after that I hardly notice it. When you go for chemo, the nurse will sterilize the spot thoroughly with about 5 swabs of alcohol and betadine. The needle is shaped kinda like the number 7 only with a straight top and they stick the top side straight into port (it has opening under the skin). It stings a bit, but nothing like needle going into vein on hand or arm. The tubing to IV is connected to needle and then the chemo just drips right in. After you are through, they take out needle and put a gauze pad over area and tape it down. You can take it off by the time you get home. Like Carrie said, it is the best thing I have done for myself to help with all my IVs. Let us hear how it goes for you. Hoping for the best for you.
God bless you.
I had a port and it is the only way to go. After it was put in it was a bit tender but once it healed up, it was great. I recommend getting a prescription of EMLA which is a lidocaine cream. I would apply an hour before treatment and felt absolutly no pain. For all the blood drawns and chemos it is the only way to go. Everyone should get one. Love, Deb
Having a port was the greatest thing! You will absolutely love it! I was a little nervous when they recommended one for me but afterwards I wouldn't have done it any other way. I had to take 52 treatments of herceptin which I just finished and I plan on leaving my port in for a few years. I don't even feel it! Good luck!!