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Port or Line for getting Chemo and Blood Clots

Posts: 64
Joined: Apr 2011


My mother had surgery a while back to get a port or line inserted in the upper left hand corner of her chest (near her arm) so that she could get chemotherapy.

I’m not sure whether a port or a line was inserted but the item was placed inside her body under her skin so it’s not visible from the outside.

My mother did not have chemotherapy for around 2 months. Unfortunately, we weren’t aware that she had to go to the medical center to get her port or line cleaned at least once a month. Thus, during the 2 months she did not receive any chemo, the port/line was not cleaned.

About a month or two later, a PET Scan showed that she had a blood clot in her lung.

Could not getting the line/port cleaned have caused the blood clot? I recently heard that if you don’t get the line/port cleaned it could cause a blood clot.

However, I’m thinking that if a blood clot is caused by the line/port, the blood clot should occur near the line/port area rather than in her lung.

Any thoughts or advice you can provide would be deeply appreciated.

Thank you very much for your kind help.


cher76's picture
Posts: 302
Joined: Nov 2010

I do know that the line is suppose to be flushed about every month if not used. My husband had a PICC line that was being used, and so was flushed every day. But after about 9 months he developed a blood clot in it. He just woke up one morning with his arm all swollen and red. After a sonogram of his arm it was determined that a clot had formed, so the line was pulled and medication was given to dissolve the clot. They then inserted a port- a- cath in his chest that he used from then on. He never had any other troubles with it after that.
Wife of Rickie, dx Ec stage IV, Oct. 2010
Mets to bones and brain
Lost the battle, Jan. 4, 2012

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Posts: 64
Joined: Apr 2011

Thank you for your kind assistance. I appreciate your feedback.


Posts: 64
Joined: Apr 2011

Hi Cheryl,

Thank you for the information you provided. I appreciate your help.


Posts: 57
Joined: Dec 2011

Mom had a PICC line that required daily saline flushing + heparin flush. My understanding was that this prevented clots within the line -- I was never told that lack of flushing would create clots elsewhere.

ozchrissy's picture
Posts: 22
Joined: Mar 2012

I think I am going to present a few problems for my doctors when I get to the Chemo stage as well. I have a blood clot already on my ICD lead in my heart. I am on Warfarin also. I read this with a bit of concern, these are the type of things that you don't contemplate in the early stages. I know I will stop the Warfarin prior to the operation, but for the chemo I am wondering what they will do for me. But one step at a time, I am sure they will have an answer for me.

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