How To Sleep With A Chemo Port
Small implantable reservoir using a thin silicone tube that attaches to a vein. The most important advantage of this vein-access device is that chemotherapy medications can be delivered directly into the jack as opposed to a vein, eliminating the need for needle sticks.
A port differs in the PICC line as a port is surgically implanted in your own body and contains a tube or catheter that is joined to an artery or vein. If need be it can stay in for many years. A port saves your veins and becomes your friend during Chemotherapy and together with the innumerable blood tests which go with this! You might wonder if it is. My response would be, as it will save your veins.
The port is implanted — May be Left or Right side of chest Depending upon not or if you had a Mastectomy or what your Oncologist orders. It looks like this:
After I had my interface to put in, I did not realize it was such a huge thing. It is an outpatient surgical procedure with a living room, a room, surgery, and a recovery room. I don’t know what I expected, but maybe not that much fanfare! The process took about one hour. It didn’t do anything for me personally, although you are given sleep by the surgical group. I was broad awake and recalled the entire procedure. They asked when I wanted more so I would fall asleep. I did not. Everybody differs, although I hate that drugged feeling up! My sister said she didn’t fall asleep.
The surgeon numbs the area with Lanacane, a drug, Creates an incision, the tube is on the vein or artery, and itself is inserted into the human body. Then the place is stitched closed, and they take you to recovery. I wasn’t able to drive home and has been warned ahead of time to bring a motorist. I had to take it easy for 3 days with no lifting, with my upper body or stooping. I felt fine but my sister had another experience. She had been feeble and very light-headed from the sleep meds. And her blood pressure plummeted. It is actually the best idea when you’ve got a wheelchair to depart the cortical location. Had she not been in the wheelchair, my sister could have collapsed. But as soon as I got some food to her (salty soup) and obtained more fluids to her, she started feeling better immediately.
Before you have your port placed, it is a great idea To ask the surgeon where it will be put. This will help tremendously in the future as women complain about this if they could avoid your bra straps.
My place that is surgical hurt like crazy for 2 weeks. Many people have no pain at all. My theory that mine hurt was because I had a thick breast on that side and was not able to wear a bra that is tighter since I had a Mastectomy only 3 months. So the incision was pulled by my breast. Back the pain wasn’t cut by it much, although I took Motrin. The vast majority of people don’t have the kind of pain that I did.
The other thing I wasn’t ready for is you are disrupted by the port sleep. I wasn’t able to sleep on the side using the vent for over 6 months! It had been sleeping in my back or nothing, Because I had a mastectomy on the other side! Then a sudden, all discomfort all left, and I managed to sleep on that side.
During Chemo, my port worked most of the time. On 4 occasions, the port got clogged up. Therefore the Chemo Nurses would have me do all kinds of acrobatics to get it to unclog. They were always effective with almost standing on your mind (wig fell off once!) , lying back in placing your hands over your head and coughing, or a chair! It worked. They do have drugs they can insert into the vent to unclog if necessary. Thankfully, I didn’t want that done.
Your Oncologist will let you know if the vent may be taken off. In The interim, if it’s not being tapped for chemo or blood tests, you must have a port flush at least one time per month in your local blood draw laboratory or Oncologist’s office.
I’ve gotten letters from people who have had their ports in for as long, as 10 decades! They were afraid to carry them out or afraid of recurrence. Trust me, as your Oncologist urges taking it out as fast is the best advice I can give, although those fears.
Port removal is not quite as traumatic as vent insertion. For one thing, You are happy to have it out! Blood tests are performed to look at on your platelets and clotting factor. Mine was ordinary so that they were able to proceed. They have to make sure your blood flow and that you don’t prevent bleeding out of the artery. Good idea, huh?
In my medical facility, the elimination has been completed in a surgical area Not a full-blown operating room. Two assistants prepped me and my torso area. They didn’t offer me any medications or twilight sleep. My surgeon explained that everybody becomes really tough during Chemotherapy, so medications usually are not necessary. He spoke the truth and was serious!
The area numbed. He made an Incision then removed the catheter. He had to place pressure to be certain the bleeding ceased. By cutting the sutures that held it in 14, he removed the port. He put a strain on the region for several moments. Once the port was outside, he made an inside row of dissolving stitches along with an external row.
The process itself took approximately 30 minutes. I was given instructions to take it times, again not stooping, lifting, or Exerting my body. The Lanacane is wearing off as I write this, And it is starting to hurt a little. This pain will probably be fine with Motrin! I can tell you this!
How do you sleep with the Chemo port under your skin?
You might want to try a body pillow underneath just one side of your body so you’re not flat on your back but not really all the way over on your side either. I was pretty sore for a while, and it gets better. I had radiation the same week that I had the port put in. Laying on my stomach for those few minutes was pretty wretched. They had a jelly-like substance that they made into a donut and wrapped with tape for my port. It helped a great deal, so if you want to sleep on your stomach maybe you could take a kitchen towel and tape it into a donut?
Give it time; the human body adapts, and what is a bothersome feel now will eventually become unnoticeable.
If it’s actual PAIN, even while awake, then discuss it with your once.
Start sleeping on your back after his port placement.
Chemo Port Side Effects
- The place becomes red, swollen, painful, bruised, or hot.
- There’s a good deal of bleeding.
- You get a fever.
- Any liquid leaks out.
- You have shortness of breath or dizziness.
- The catheter tube outside your own body gets longer.
- You can’t flush the catheter or port with liquid.
Rebecca Marie, MA, LMHC, LPC, MAA is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and is an expert in anxiety, stress, depression, and relationship issues.