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chemo port

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 832
Joined: Dec 2017

I am way ahead of myself asking this since I have 8 infusions to go, but how long after the last infusion do they take the chemo port out? Do they do it right after, or do they wait a while to make sure no more chemo is needed? I really am looking forward to it out! I get so nervous about it.

JanJan63's picture
JanJan63
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

I think it's up to you. They left mine in and after a year it started to come out through my skin so they had to remove it. Taking it out was easy and quick. Not an issue at all. 

Jan

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 832
Joined: Dec 2017

That is interesting. The body pushed it out. I was hoping it would be easier than inserting it. Why did they leave it in for a year? I wonder if there are pros to leaving it in. I wonder about blood clots. I get nervous when anyone gets close to my neck that it could get smashed. It makes sleeping a bit uncomfortable. All kinds of silly reasons I think about.

lhduffer
Posts: 86
Joined: Oct 2015

I think it depends on the individual circumstances.  I still have mine 2 1/2 years out.  I asked my surgeon about having it removed in October but was told no.  They want me to wait until at least 2 years after my surgery, which will be this April.  They said we could take a look at it after my next scan, which is in March.

I have gotten used to it but mine protudes greatly so I really want it removed so I can wear some of my clothes again!

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5225
Joined: Jan 2013

After my first clear scan, my Oncologist wanted it out. He said because of infection. 

Luckily, after my liver ablation, they decided no more chemo, so I dodged a bullet there. 

Tru

JanJan63's picture
JanJan63
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

Mine was sitting right on top of a bone. I hated it. Seatbelts were uncomfortable, I'd cringe if someone wanted to hug me, it was just ugly. I was lucky to still have it when I had the blood clot, though, because they'd take blood at least once a day and they could do it through the port. They'd do it at 5 am and I wouldn't even wake up. I had mine a year and a half, sorry, not a year. 

Then it wasn't being used but I still had to go in and get it flushed which was a pain in the rear. Sometimes it would clog. I remember one time having to march up and down the halls where people were waiting to try to unclog it. Then, as I said, it started to come out through my skin. The little bumps that they use as a guide did come out and were bleeding and then all scabby. I didn't find that it helped much for the chemo anyway, it still hurts a lot when they poke you.

Anyway, the removal is easy, don't worry about it.

Jan

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 832
Joined: Dec 2017

I have problems with bra straps, purse straps, hugging all that too!

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5225
Joined: Jan 2013

Mine also went under my bra strap. I ended up using a nursing pad to give a little comfort, but not much. I also went braless at home.

My word, what with going braless because of the port, and knickerless because of the radiation, I really did drop my underwear, so to speak. HA! 

Tru

zx10guy
Posts: 266
Joined: Dec 2013

For the ladies, it's always a good idea to wear your bra for the surgeon to mark the location where to put the port.  It doesn't have to go where they think it needs to go so long as they have a guide of where to avoid.  Typically, I've seen the surgeon go for the right side for port placement.  This will be good for you if you drive a lot as the seat belt would be a non issue.  For me unfortunately, the attempt to put my port in on the right side failed and they had to get it in on the left via guided ultrasound and a radiologist.

As far as when your port comes out, as other said, it depends on your situation.  My oncologist helped make the call with me.  I hated my port for many reasons.  I asked my oncologist when I could get the blasted thing out on my 11th cycle.  He said to wait 2 weeks after my last round of chemo before getting it out.  This was probably because he wanted to make sure there was enough time for any residual of the chemo to work its way out of my system.  The same thing they do for people going in to surgery after going through chemo so your body can heal properly.  I told my surgeon of our plan and he was a bit shocked by how soon it was coming out as he expected to have it in at least a year.  He asked me to double check with my oncologist again and if my oncologist confirmed it was ok, he would pull it out.  My oncologist confirmed and it was out 2 weeks after finishing chemo.

Again, it's an individual thing.  Many people want the security of having it in place in case a recurrence happens.  I'm of the mindset that my port was problematic and I wanted it out.  If I had a recurrence, I would have bigger issues than worrying about having a port put back in.

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 832
Joined: Dec 2017

I hate my chemo port! I just had a liver resection after 4 rounds of chemo, and yes, they waited 3 weeks for the chemo to get out of my system. I don't start the last 8 rounds until 5 weeks after surgery so that my wound and liver have recovered enough. Surgery and chemo apparrently don't mix. Also, chemo is hard on the liver, so I wonder if giving it time to start regenarating was part of it.

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6554
Joined: Feb 2009

It's really up to doctor on how they want to proceed.  Mine actually took it out a month after finishing treatment and was so relieved.  It hurt me because it was so close to the surface that anything that it touched would make it hurt.  Ask your doctor what they think.  Some like to keep it in longer to check the next CT scan to make sure your are still clear.  My scan was clear in early October and they took it out two weeks later.  Wishing you well.

Kim

PamRav's picture
PamRav
Posts: 282
Joined: Jan 2017

I found mine to be sore and irritating during the chemo. But after being off the hard stuff since end of August I don’t notice it much at all. No one has mentioned it’s removal. I would assume they’ll wait till I have a few consecutive clean scans 

in The meantime I find it’s a not so gentle reminder to eat well and exercise. 

Pam

ThomasH's picture
ThomasH
Posts: 100
Joined: Jun 2016

They installed mine in my left inside bicep. I finished my chemo about a year and a half ago, and I still have my port in. I still get it flushed once a month, but aside from that I pretty much forget it is there. I'm glad I don't have it in my chest, sounds like that has some extra challenges.

My Dr is talking about leaving it in me for up to 5 years. I don't know if that is normal, but that is my normal anyway.

Thomas

abita's picture
abita
Posts: 832
Joined: Dec 2017

5 years? Yikes!

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5225
Joined: Jan 2013

YUK!

I've seen Pics in peoples arms, and that looks uncomfortable enough, but a port in an arm. Nasty!

And five years, wow. Rather you than me. 

Tru

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