A chemo port is a device that is inserted under the skin and connects to a vein via catheter. They are usually installed in the chest below the collar bone.
Installation of a chemo port is an outpatient procedure that takes less than an hour performed by a Intervention Radiologist on an X-Ray table.
In this video, I show you my chemo port and give a brief overview of the surgery and infusion process.
Why a Chemo Port?
I received my port in June and it has made chemotherapy so much more bearable. Before the port was installed, the infusions were done in my hand. This is very painful and limits mobility. Three of my first 5 chemo treatments lasted 10 hours each. Yes, TEN hours. Sitting with my hand still for 10 hours, for a person like me, is not easy! It is uncomfortable and if you move your arm the wrong way, you might inhibit the flow of the IV drip.
I basically demanded a port after the first session. The surgery was scheduled for after my second session. If you have been following my blog, you know that I had an allergic reaction to Taxotere during my second session and I had to receive an additional infusion of Herceptin the following Monday. So, I actually had 3 sessions of chemo without the port.
Let me tell you, I love my port.
With a port installed, you have full use of both hands. I can type, crochet or read a book during infusion and not have to worry about discomfort or loss of flow.
You definitely want a chemo port!