Sunday, January 29, 2012

Stressful, Painful, & Complicated Port Removal!

I had my appt. for chemo-port removal on January 27th. Ports consist of a tube (catheter), attached to a dome-shaped part. The device is surgically implanted under the skin, with the dome placed in the chest, where it will be easily accessible for injections through a needle. The catheter is threaded into a large vein, where rapid blood flow will dilute the drug, and keep it from damaging the lining of the vein. The whole device will be completely covered by skin. Ports can also be used for drawing blood, thus avoiding needle sticks of the arms during clinic visits.

Dr. Euhus made the first incision on my chest on top of the port & was unable to pull out the tube that went from the port to my jugular vein.  (I also had a complicated port insertion during my mastectomy.  He couldn't go in under the clavicle & had to make a neck incision.)  The removal procedure took twice as long since he had to make another incision in my neck to see what the problem was with the tubing.  It seems my tube was encased in scar tissue which he had to cut away until he could release the port tubing safely.  I came home unnerved & in more pain than I expected.  This made me miss my best friend's daughter's wedding shower luncheon on  Saturday & my granddaughter's dance competition on Friday night & Saturday.  This made me sad!  I had to take a hydrocodone for 2 days, but today I haven't even had ibuprofen.  It is tender, but not painful after 2 days - yay!

Well, at least the port is gone!

On a brighter note, chemotherapy is finished (woohoo!), port is gone, radiation prep work is completed, & radiation starts February 1st & will be over mid-March!  Yippee!

It's all downhill from here!  (I hope!)