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Infusion port troubles

yensid683
Posts: 225
Joined: Apr 2012

Here's something that I've not seen posted to these boards.

I have an infusion port that developed a clot in my jugular vein. I've been prescribed an inject-able anti coagulant, two self administered shots a day for two weeks and then 6 months on anti coagulant pills. I was not told that clots could be a complication and doing some research, it is pretty rare, anyone heard of something like this?

They're setting up removal of the port next week and I'm wondering how they take the port out. Installing it was day surgery, I was out cold but it was quick. Anyone had one out? How do they take it out?

Thanks

Peter

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
Posts: 3666
Joined: Mar 2012

how they take a port out....hope someone will enlighten us :).

My Oncologist put me on Coumadin as soon as I got my port to keep clots from happening. So far I haven't heard on here of that happening, but I'm sure somebody knows something.

p

osmotar's picture
osmotar
Posts: 953
Joined: Jul 2011

I've had my port since last june, it's power port under the skin, no issues yet, my onco nurse says i should keep it for another year, the only thing is remembering to get it flushed every 6 weeks..Skiffin who posts here, had his removed,I think he said in his doctors office.

Linda

longtermsurvivor's picture
longtermsurvivor
Posts: 1780
Joined: Mar 2010

generally heavy sedation and local, out before you know it. I had mine out a month ago. No big deal.

Pat

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
Posts: 8062
Joined: Sep 2009

Like Pat mentioned...actually much easier coming out than going in...

Like you, my Power Port was put in by knocking me out, several hour ordeal in the hospital as an out patient.

Coming out, much easier and very quick actually.... In office procedure.., local numbing injection was the worse part of the removal...

A few injections of numbing meds, a slice of the skin, a few tugs and pulls...internal dissolving sutures and a dab or two of super glue to close the incision.

Here's the photos....

Before (while in)..., the incision closed up just after (I mean like 10 minutes after)..., and the port itself, just taken out.

Port In

Port Out - Incision

Port

Like Linda above, my Chemo MD left my port in for over two years post Tx...

Best,
John

hwt's picture
hwt
Posts: 1881
Joined: Jun 2012

Wow John, that photo of where your port was is certainly different from where I had a Hohn catheter. Mine was taken out in the ONC office, I wasn't numbed and never felt a thing. Small hole closed up in a day or two. Got curious because I always called it a port. I wasn't given a choice but looks like I got by easy on that one. I don't know what makes a doctor choose one or the other but for someone just starting this journey, you might want to inquire if the Hohn catheter might work for you. This is what I read about removal: When the central venous access catheter is no longer necessary, or if a catheter-related infection arises, interventional radiologists can assist in removing the catheter. Certain catheters — such as PICC lines and Hohn catheters — can be easily removed at the bedside or in clinic. Other catheters may require dissection of the cuff from the subcutaneous tissues, which requires sterile technique, local anesthetic and possibly sedation. Port catheters require a small incision for removal.

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
Posts: 3666
Joined: Mar 2012

enlightenment :). I really didn't have a clue how that would be done, or who would be doing it...

There's no chance of puncturing a lung with it coming out, is there?

p

CivilMatt's picture
CivilMatt
Posts: 2903
Joined: May 2012

Hi Peter,

I had the (less popular) PICC for blood draws and chemo infusions. They had to put an anticoagulant in it a few times when it would become clogged. When they removed it, the nurse looked in my file, noted 47.5 cm in length, pulled it out and measured 47.5 cm in length. The PICC was installed on the inside of my bicep and it itched almost the whole time. I asked to have it removed one week after my last chemo. If I ever get around to it I will post a picture (like John). That guy fishes (and works) all day and still finds time to entertain us with his knowledge.

Best,

Matt

osmotar's picture
osmotar
Posts: 953
Joined: Jul 2011

What surprised me about the port , was I guess being a newbie in 2011, I made the assumption ( I know , I know) that every onco doc in the group I saw all their patience had them, boy was I wrong . Having small veins that roll I watched and cringed when I saw what some patients who were port less had to go thru when the onc nurses were trying to find a vein . One of the admins in my office asked about my port and asked how I taped the tubing down under my tops ,when I showed her what I had she was surprised.... And then there is my granddaughter who asks grammie do you still have that medicine bump in your chest. So as earlier posted I'll keep it for another year.

Linda

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
Posts: 8062
Joined: Sep 2009

I'm not sure of the specifics on the other types of infusion devices.

I know the Power Port can be used for both infusion and blood draws. But the guy at my Chemo center is awesome good at blood draws, never missed a vein, never felt the stick and fast.

So for my blood draws I just had him do it through the vein.

Like Linda mentioned, after Tx I just had to go in every 6 - 8 weeks for them to fluch it... That keeps it open and lessens the chances of infections, etc...

I also know with the port they can control the feed rate on the infusions, allowing for a faster (pumped) rate of flow.

Phrannie, as for puncturing a lung..no chances on the. It's just under the skin.., between the skin and tissue covering the outside of the chest. It has three bumps (you can feel them with your fingers) on it so they can tell the general area to insert the pin each time in use.

That did sting a little... with it under the skin, each time they used it, they had a pin similar to a cork board stick pin. It would have to puncture the skin and it was of a pretty good sized gauge. That pin had a tube attached that they connected to infuse the meds.

When finished they unhooked everything and pulled the pin out.

I always wondered why it wasn't detected at the air ports or scanners. But it was inclosed in a soft latex or silicone based material.

I guess inserting it, they tend to be a little more controlled and chances of causing a situation as it goes into an arterior I believe. So that's the reasoning on inserting it while under and in a hospital or more surgical type environment.

I wondered why the could pull it out without worrying about leaving a whole in that artery...maybe Pat knows.

JG

osmotar's picture
osmotar
Posts: 953
Joined: Jul 2011

I carry a card that I received when the port was put in just in case, I've also mentioned it prior to scan. The do my blood draws from mine as well .

yensid683
Posts: 225
Joined: Apr 2012

Evidently my onc's thought that this clot issue is much more serious than I appreciated.

I had a follow up appt yesterday, scheduled for 11:40, I received a phone call at the start of the business day changing the appointment to 10 am, as the port was going to be removed at noon. The kicker is that I'd already administered myself my anti coagulant shot. The onc's noted that I had it on board and said that it had to come out anyway.

Removal was like you said, skin prepped, surgical drapes, a few sticks with the Novocaine and it was out in just a few minutes. The surgeon (same one who placed it in April) even used the same scar/incision that he used to place it, so there is no additional scarring.

I did have some problems afterwards, swelling from what I think was a leaking jugular vein, but some ice overnight and it was good. Still pretty tender but that should disappear after a few days.

BTW, arteries are never catheterized, only veins.

Peter

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