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Port and Chemo

Mikes Sunshine's picture
Mikes Sunshine
Posts: 129
Joined: Jan 2009

Hi Friends,
Today I had my Port put in. I am so tired so this will be very short. I am having my first infusion tomorrow at 10:00 am. I guess they know what they are doing but I can't imagine them trying to press around on my chest to locate the port and insert the needle. It is preety tender. Actually it hurts more in the neck area I think that it were they hook the port to the vien. I guess I will meet the red devil for the first time. I am going in with the attitude that the drugs are the warriors that will help me battle the beast. (Thanks Moopy) This has given me such a feeling of power. All the encouragenment I have received on this site has changed me from someone who was scared to death of the thought of getting chemo. Now I feel like bring it on baby!I will get back on as soon as I can with an update. Love,Nancy

young_one's picture
Posts: 71
Joined: Nov 2008

I actually had my first chemo the day they put in the port. It may not seem like it now but a lot of people come to value their port.

I big puffy heart my port. Anyone else?

Eil4186's picture
Posts: 967
Joined: Dec 2007

Hang in there Nancy, I know the port being put in hurt me a lot too. The red devil sure does have a reputation! It sucks no doubt, but like you said its a necessary evil and you can handle it because you are strong! Anything to beat this crappy disease....I'll be thinking of you tomorrow. I found that I had anticipatory nausea each time I entered the hospital for my chemo so I started bringing scented oils like peppermint or orange and held the little bottle under my nose and it helped. I think that I was associating the hospital smell with the nausea.....Also a good magazine helped take my mind off of it. I always had somebody with me though. Don't make my mistake----I would always forget and eat something I wasn't supposed to when I got home and pay for it with vomitting. When I stuck to bannanas, applesauce, water and dry toast for the first couple days I was fine. Good luck and let us know how you make out. Eil

mrmauld's picture
Posts: 44
Joined: Jan 2009

Dear Nancy, My port was put in 2 days before my first infusion and was so sore I thought I'd scream if someone were to look at it crooked. I have only had 2 treatments so far and my next one will be on the 13th. I wondered when they put the line in my port to draw blood if it would be too bad but I told them how tender it was and they sprayed it with a numbing agent which I found that they only do this to new patients. After the first time it does get tougher and doesn't hurt as much. Then as I sat there I also wondered what my body would do as the killer "red stuff" entered my body, so I prayed and you know it was like nothing was really happening to me. I didn't feel any different or anything. That night and the next day I was running in circles trying to find something to do. That was a side effect of the steroids. Then on Sunday "day 2" my bones ached like I had the flu. "day 3" I stayed in the bed. My second treatment ran just about the same way. I hope and pray that your treatment goes pretty well too. My prayers will be with you tomorrow. get some rest
Lots of Love

Posts: 134
Joined: Nov 2008

Those ports are amazing! You will definitely grow to appreciate yours and the tenderness will go away. That strange feeling you have in your neck may last a week or so. During my first week I could feel it when I laughed, when I coughed, and when I turned my head side to side. Eventually, my body got used to it and I hardly even notice it anymore.

My treatment is done, but I'm keeping my port for awhile. Neither one of my arms/hands can be accessed for the blood draws, so I appreciate the handiness of my port.

Glad to hear that the warrior in you is coming out! We'll be thinking of you tomorrow at 10:00 am.

Moopy23's picture
Posts: 1753
Joined: Jan 2009

So proud of you Nancy. I will be thinking of you and be with you and your Mike in spirit tomorrow. Access to my port never hurts, which surprised me. I believe the nurses can use lidocaine or another cream if you were to need it.

mmontero38's picture
Posts: 1532
Joined: Dec 2007

Hi Nancy: I remember only too well the tenderness and soreness when the port was first put in but you will come to value the port as you go along. It will save your veins from being damaged and having to get an IV in every time. I hope all goes well tomorrow and know you will be in my prayers. Hugs to you dear friend. Lili

Posts: 826
Joined: Jun 2007

I have had my port in for a year...it gets to be like a part of you. If you have ever had an IV in the arm, you know it hurts and keeps hurting after the needle is out. The port is sooooo much better!!! You have to be alittle careful, but you can move your hands and do stuff, and the IV doesn't hurt.

Take care of yourself and rest when you feel like it and play when you feel like it.


rjjj's picture
Posts: 1826
Joined: Jan 2009

Hi Nancy, My port was sore for about a week..but my first treatment they gave me a tube of lidocaine to put on the port about 45 min. before it needs to be accessed. I didn't feel a thing. I use the lidocaine every time even for blood draws. I have heard it doesn't hurt that much even if you don't use it. Now i can't imagine being without my port. I didn't get nauseated yet from treatments just tired.
Your on your way girl.. Go Fight Win!!! I'm wishing you the best tomorrow and you and all my pink sisters are in my prayers tonight.
God Bless

RE's picture
Posts: 4644
Joined: Feb 2004

Hello Nancy,

I have never had a port or pic line, however I have had my fair share of chemo. I will be thinking and praying for you tomorrow. Please be kind to yourself and get lots of rest.

My best to you,


lynn1950's picture
Posts: 2574
Joined: Jun 2008

I remember the tenderness and funny feeling under my skin when I first got my port. I too was given EMLA cream (lidocaine) that I put on an hour before the port needed to be accessed and the procedure was painless. The red stuff is scary. The nurse will give you some other drugs through your port and in pill form first to help you feel OK during and after chemo. Having a port is so much better than having an IV. Much more comfortable. Adriamycin is scary, but cancer cells beware, BIG RED is on the job. Lynn

Derbygirl's picture
Posts: 198
Joined: Jul 2008

I didn't have a port but I did have four rounds of chemo last year. Insertion of the IV was not pleasant but I was lucky to have the same nurse each time who did a good job and used different veins in either arm. On treatment day I listened to my iPod and read magazines. Afterwards, be sure to drink lots of water, eat small frequent meals and rest when you feel like it. Sounds like you have a good attitude about the situation and I'm sure that will help. Looking forward to hearing how your day goes. Good luck.

Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2009

LOVE MY PORT!!! I was very sore too the first time I had treatment. The nurse said to close my eyes and take a deep breath. I did and she told me to let it go slowly, very slowly. I did and next she said, "That's it." It did not hurt one single tiny bit. Couldn't believe it. After that, I wasn't afraid any longer. The only thing that really bothers me is wearing bras. If I wear one, it seems to push right where the port is. Doesn't hurt, just feels strange. Then I thought, shoot, I'm 64 years old, who needs a bra. No one's checking out my boobs anyway. And that's the end of it. My sister got me these pasties which cover the nipples so I'm not self-conscious when I wear a sweater. Works great and SOOOOOO much more comfortable. Good luck with your treatment.

chenheart's picture
Posts: 5180
Joined: Apr 2003

I didn't do the Puffy Heart, but I did draw a Happy Face on my port..people couldn't help but notice the watch-face sized "thing" right under the skin, so I thought, what the H***, give em something to look at! And when I was caught in a rain storm without a jacket, of course my chest became Any Port In A Storm. Yes, you may groan!

The port was a god-send; made labs, and of course chemo so much easier.


Bill.S's picture
Posts: 177
Joined: Jul 2008

My port was put in about a week before my first chemo. I don't really remember terrible pain but it was worse than the mastectomy because that area is still numb. Having lost 30 pounds I'm sort of skin and bones so my port really sticks out. (Nurses love it- no searching). Between chemo every 3rd week, herceptin every week, 25 transfusions of various types, and 2 seperate weeks in the hospital with constant IVs the Port has saved my life.
Currently doing 4-6 weeks of daily IV Vancomycin along with Herceptin every 3rd week. They are keeping th port accessed for this daily routine.
EMELA cream is great stuff too.
It does get better as it goes along------ well actually I went up and down a lot---- but am through the worst of it.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Posts: 2
Joined: Feb 2009

I had my port put in a week ago yesterday and it is very sore also still after a week. I can only imagine, like you , how they can administer IV thru it when it's such a sensitive area.
My first chemo will be the 25th of this month so please keep me informed as to your progress as well. Hopefully the ports will be more comfortable as time passes..sure saves the veins in the arm (only my right since I had a mastectomy on Jan 7 of the left breast)
Did anyone find their own lump? I did, went for a mammogram, it was neg, then on to the Dr a couple of weeks later and he couldn't feel it either..I could and told him exactly where the pea shape bump was. I was told to watch it to see if it changed sizes..and surely it did. Within 4 1/2 weeks it had grown to over 2 cm and at time of removal it was 3 cm in size. I had not invasion anywhere except the lump in the left breast, Thank God for blessings, but have to undergo 6 rounds of chemo , 1 every 3 weeks til over.
Have any of you been diagnosed w/mediplastic carsonoma? that was my diagnosis. A rare and aggressive breast cancer I was told.
Any infor will be greatly appreciated.
Prayers for all

Marcia527's picture
Posts: 2749
Joined: Jul 2006

I found mine but it was more of a invasion than a lump. I had three tumors, 6cm, 3cm and a smaller one. So my breast was solid. These did not show up on the mammogram or ultrasound but the doctors knew it was cancer, it was just difficult to find because they were working blind (the first surgeon I saw did the biopsies in the wrong place). The oncologist said it grew to that size in one year. I had chemo before surgery and still had two lymph nodes with cancer. My oncologist did say it was aggressive and they were treating me aggressively. They called mine ductal carsonoma. I had 4 cycles of chemo, surgery, 4 more cycles of chemo and then 6 weeks of radiation. I had the chemo once every three weeks also but I didn't get the port. The oncologist mentioned it but no one pushed the issue because I had very good veins. Didn't have any problem.

sausageroll's picture
Posts: 415
Joined: Dec 2008

Can you swim with a port? What shows on the outside?

mmontero38's picture
Posts: 1532
Joined: Dec 2007

You can do everything with the port. The port is inserted under the skin so all you see a like a lump where it is. Or at least, that is how mine looked when I had it. Hugs, Lili

Mikes Sunshine's picture
Mikes Sunshine
Posts: 129
Joined: Jan 2009

Mine is completly under the skin just a lump near my collar bone. No need to cover it to shower or anything. (only for a couple of days after it was but in) My cancer center does not draw blood thru the port they still stick your arm for that. Just use it for chemo but they have told me of no restrictions. Nancy

mimivac's picture
Posts: 2147
Joined: Dec 2008

I have a little scar from the port surgery and a bump where the port is implanted. The day after my port surgery, I went for a weekend stay at a hot springs resort and took a dip in the springs-fed indoor pool. My scar and bump were visible in my bikini, but I didn't care -- the water was so soothing.

ladybug22's picture
Posts: 647
Joined: Sep 2008

just wanted tl let you know they use my port forevery thing.I have no trouble out of port. Nancy the chemo its tuff but your tuffer,hang in there take one step at a time and befor long the red devil will be over. People here are great. JUST REMENBE WE ARE HERE FOR YOU,

ladybug22's picture
Posts: 647
Joined: Sep 2008

just wanted tl let you know they use my port forevery thing.I have no trouble out of port. Nancy the chemo its tuff but your tuffer,hang in there take one step at a time and befor long the red devil will be over. People here are great. JUST REMENBE WE ARE HERE FOR YOU,

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