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RC woes & PICC

Posts: 9
Joined: Sep 2006

Greetings again, I could pepper you people with questions every day.....thanks! Anyone tell me the truth about PICC lines...pain, care, problems....?? Planning 6 wks of 5fu continous infusion, with radiation. Keith

Posts: 719
Joined: Feb 2005

Hey Keith, Well, I haven't heard the greatest things about PICC lines...My doc recommended against one and instead suggested a port; he felt that the PICC would catch on shirts, jackets, sweaters and be less comfortable. I am sure these are not the things you really wanted to hear...How about asking your doc about the alternative? All the best to you - Maura

jsabol's picture
Posts: 1156
Joined: Dec 2003

Hi Keith,
We have all had our share of questions, so ask away; it's actually great to have others benefit from those who came before. I consistantly found more thorough advice here than my oncs and nurses had!
Have to agree with Maura...usual standard of care is port, for the reasons she outlined, as well, I believe, in some increased incidence of infection. The port heals into a closed system; why is your doc recommending PICC line?
I tried my first course of chemo (5FU and leuco) without the port at the rec of my first onc...what a mistake! My veins were screaming after the first 6 infusions. The port presented some issues, but none insurmountable. The discomfort was mild and transient, but I did experience an uncomplicated clot later that responded well to coumadin, with no ongoing issues.
Good luck to you on this next step. Judy

Posts: 9
Joined: Sep 2006

Judy, my dr is telling me the picc line would be his choice for short term infusions..mine will be 6 weeks. he wants it in 24 hrs before we start with 5fu. His nurse has stress the need to keep it clean and dry to prevent infection. Your first course was that with a PICC? Many thanks..Keith

KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

Questions you have, answers hopefully WE have!

I also have a port...had it inserted before I started my 5FU pump....actually, it was put in in the morning, I was infused with it and pump attached that same afternoon (this is NOT the recommended way....it's better if you can wait 24 hours, but I had limited time).
I am saying goodbye to this old friend on Tuesday, after almost 2 years. It was used for chemo for both the rectal and the breast cancers and even feeding me when I had a complete bowel obstruction. No muss, no fuss. The only bad thing was that it ruined my dress line (heheheehe).

Hugs, Kathi

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