About The Author: Hi, Care+Wear community! My name is Aurora, and I’m a board-certified critical care nurse practitioner at Boston’s top trauma center.
Learning To Love Your Port
Many patients diagnosed with cancer or chronic illness may require a port throughout the course of their treatment, which is a small implanted device placed under the skin to provide IV access for chemotherapy, medications, transfusions and blood draws. We wanted to remind all of community members that either currently or will soon have a port inserted that there are plenty of reasons to embrace your medical device. Here is a list of 7 reasons to love your port:
1. Placement is quick and easy!
The port placement procedure can be done under local anesthetic, and takes less than 30 minutes to complete. Most physicians also choose to give their patients medications that make them feel drowsy, in order to optimize comfort and reduce anxiety. Once implanted, your port site takes roughly 3 days to heal. Although you may experience soreness for the first 24 hours, your port can be used right away!
2. What port?
Your port is hidden under your skin and is so small and easy to conceal. No one will even notice you have one!
3. Your port is awesome!
Yes, needles stink. Most people who are frequently hospitalized know what I'm talking about. Blood draws, IVs, and shots...they pinch, poke and are generally not fun. Your port essentially solves all of these problems! Once accessed, your port acts as an IV and can be used for blood draws—awesome, right? Thanks, port!
4. That said, there will still be some needles...
In order to access your port, a healthcare personnel will need to insert a special needle, but insertion is generally painless. Depending on your hospital’s policy, once accessed, the needle in your port can be used for up to 4 days!
5. The goal is to make things easier.
Know that the goal of your port is to make things easier and more convenient. From infusions to blood draws, your port simplifies things for you and your caregiver.
6. Your port allows you to continue to do the things you love!
One of the top advantages of having a port is that it will not prevent you from doing the things you love. Swimming, jogging, and playing sports remain fun and easy. You can also go about normal day-to-day activities, like showering, as you normally would.
7. Your port keeps you safe!
Most long-term infusions can be damaging to peripheral veins. Because your port infuses directly into a large vessel, this is no longer a worry. Your peripheral veins will remain healthy and safe!
If you are looking for more resources and support surrounding living with a port, check out our other blogs:
- How To Sleep With A Chemo Port
- Navigating My 20's With A Chest Port
- The Best Clothing For Your Chemotherapy Treatment Sessions
What are some other reasons to love your port? Let us know in the comments or share your story with us here. We love hearing from our community members!