Question about Power Port removal and replacement

lizard44 Member Posts: 409 Member
edited January 2023 in Colorectal Cancer #1

For the last few chemo treatments I 've sometimes needed an injection of  Alteplase to unclot my  PowerPort catheter.  the port hasn't worked for withdrawing blood but  they have  been able, after the unclotting med works, to go ahead with the infusion. Yesterday was different. When they began the infusion it caused a nasty pain in my right arm and shoulder  that traveled up my neck (the port is on the left side). Concerned, they stopped the infusion and sent me down to radiology for a  fluoroscopy with contrast. The fluoroscopy showed a complete  occlusion due to a fibrin sheaf, so  I  was unable to  get chemotherapy yesterday. The plan is to  remove the  port and catheter and replace them. I'm waiting  now to hear to hear when the surgeon can schedule the procedure (Fridays are not good days to have things go wrong :-) since so many  clinics  seem to close at noon).    My question, for those of you who might have had this done, is  do they  put the replacement port  in  roughly the same place as the old one?  I am very thin and bony and my port has always stuck out a mile and any pressure on it  is quite uncomfortabe. Wearing a seat belt is a very unpleasant experience, even with   a padded cover. Since the port is on the left side,  I haven't  driven for quite a while and my husband had become my driver. So I'm wondering  about requesting that the surgeon put the new port on the opposite side.  Does anyone know if this is feasible, or is there a particular reason for placing it on one side rather than another?



  • Trubrit
    Trubrit Member Posts: 5,791 Member
    edited October 2016 #2
    I can't answer your question...

    but I can say how sorry I am that you have this added problem. Its bad enough having Cancer and having Chemo without adding other problems on top. 

    I know the port can be placed in differing areas, and I think (but don't know 100%) that a friend of mine in England has it on his right side.  I'm sure someone else here can tell you for sure. 

    Having Chemo cancelled is a huge downer. Even though it means you might be in your 'good days' a little longer, it also means putting the date back for when its over. Yeah, I had my chemo cancelled three times, and it stunk. 



  • nateswife
    nateswife Member Posts: 65
    Right side port

    Hi Grace, 

    Sorry to hear that you have this port complication- that's frustrating. My port is on my right side. So far it hasn't given me any trouble. It gets a little sensitive after having the 5Fu pump on for 2 days. The seatbelt doesn't irritate it. 

    I hope that you can get a new port soon and that it works better than the previous one!

  • lizard44
    lizard44 Member Posts: 409 Member

    I've had this port in for 17 months now; it's survived a lot of chemo treatments, scans, blood tests and such  so I can't complain too much, although it would have been nice for it to have held out a while longer. I have no idea how much more chemo  I'll get, right now  I'm on a clean-up regimen I think, after the ablation, and  then will probably get maintenance chemo, so it could be a long haul. 

    I  noticed that almost everyone in the infusion room also seem to have the port on the left.  I wondered if it had anythng to do with  most people being right handed and there would be less movement on the left side.  If that's the case, maybe mine should be on the right side, since I'm left handed. I'll have to ask the surgeon why next time I see him, which I hope will be very soon so we can move on.

      Thanks for the kind words.


  • JanJan63
    JanJan63 Member Posts: 2,478 Member
    edited October 2016 #5
    Mine was on my right side. I

    Mine was on my right side. I never thought to wonder why, I just asumed that's where it went. I hated mine. I'd cringe every time someone gave me a hug and it was so sensitive. When it started coming out through my skin they took it out.

    Good luck!


  • harleywiz
    harleywiz Member Posts: 50 Member
    edited October 2016 #6
    port replacement

    i just had my 3rd port put in the 1st got the fiber sheft and they could not unclog it so i told them to put a new on in was put in the same place in the right shoulder year or so later the 2nd got cloged to i said replace it again this time surgon decied to put on left side to see if it makes a diffrence i dont see why this would change anything as the tube still goes down towards the heart just the input part is moved to the other shoulder i also had pain afther port a gram it was backing up and leaking in the shoulder that caused pain

  • vtspa6
    vtspa6 Member Posts: 172
    edited October 2016 #7
    My husband's port is on the

    My husband's port is on the left side, however he has a double port.  He does say that there are a good many folks that have port on the right side.

  • lrntofly
    lrntofly Member Posts: 1
    edited October 2021 #8

    My wife had her port removed last week, because of a blood infection. It was on the left side. She had it for an amazing 7 years. With regular chem. and transfusions it was a life saver for her. Once. she feels better , she  will probably have one implanted on right side. Not sure, but I think her surgeon told us the right side was a little harder to place but not a big challange. 

  • Trubrit
    Trubrit Member Posts: 5,791 Member
    Hello and welcome to the forum

    That is interesting. I wonder what makes it harder to place on the right side? 

    I had mine on the left, and other than wearing a bra and having the seatbelt over it, which was terribly uncomfortable, it worked really well. It was a bear to remove though, as scar tissue had grown around it. But, the surgeon persisted and pulled that sucker out. 

    I wish your wife, and yourself, the best as you travel the Cancer road. 

    As an aside; it is wonderful to see our friend, Lizzard's post. She was an incredible woman, and I miss her.


  • yetti
    yetti Member Posts: 82 Member

    I have had my port since July 2018, it's on my right side above right breast towards left side! I haven't had too much trouble with it! I had a fibrin sheath issue once, and had a port o gram! They injected a solution in port which stayed for 30 min, tried for blood draw a success!  Otherwise another 30 minutes.  i have only had an issue with blood draws a couple of times ! I'm a hard stick and it's hard on me to have blood draws from arms, blood draws have never been easier, I guess I keep the port for that, since I have been finished with chemo since March 2019.  I also have them use port for ct scans, pet scans and colonoscopy,  I have an endoscopy in nov which they will use port for ! 




  • Annabelle41415
    Annabelle41415 Member Posts: 6,742 Member

    My port always stuck out too and it hurt me if it was nudged.  I'm not sure if they can put it in the same place or not.  Mine was on the right side too right on my collar bone.  Wishing you well on replacement and maybe they can put it in a spot where it doesn't stick out so much and doesn't hurt you.  Mine seemed to be right on the bone so maybe there is really not a good spot for some people.


  • Mel777
    Mel777 Member Posts: 1 Member


    😊Mel777 Jan 12, 2022

    I just had a port put in for Invasive ductal carcinoma. It was red looking at first, but cleared up in about a day. I was wondering if anyone had slight neck pain and chest discomfort after the port placement? It hurts when I bend over and rise up. The discomfort is in the middle of my chest not around the port area. This happened only after the port placement. Wondering if it could just be related to nerve endings after the placement? Also, I start my chemo next week, any advice?

  • Sunny5
    Sunny5 Member Posts: 147 Member

    Just ask. Your oncologist and surgeon will know what to do. Prayers they can fix this!