Oct 26, 2022
Chemotherapy is often administered through a catheter inserted into your vein. The common type of catheter used for long term and frequent chemotherapy treatment is an implanted port, or chemo port. It is a catheter connected to a small plastic or metal disc that goes under the skin. Chemo port placement is done by a surgeon or a radiologist, with local anesthesia or conscious sedation. They are usually put in the right side of your chest, but can also be placed on the left side, under your arm, or abdomen.
Having a port for chemo is a common choice for cancer patients because:
A trained healthcare professional, typically a nurse, will access your chemo port. Here are key points to remember during port access:
Once your chemo port is accessed, it is covered with a clear sterile dressing and can be used for medications and blood draws. Keep in mind, some hospitals have policies that will not allow port access for other medical treatments if you are actively receiving chemo. This is to reduce the risk of losing your only access– your life line.
Your chemo port needs to be flushed to prevent infection and to keep it from being clogged. While your port is accessed, it will need to be flushed with saline at least once a day. Prior to removal, your nurse will flush your port with saline and a small dose of heparin to prevent clots from forming. When your port is not routinely being used, you need to have it accessed and flushed every 4 to 6 weeks.
You can also take charge of the cleanliness of your chest port while it is in use:
Contact your health care team right away if:
The bottom line is, chemo ports are helpful in preventing multiple needle sticks for frequent chemotherapy treatments and blood draws. But before you make a decision about them, you need to understand the pros and cons of having one and how to manage it. For more information about chemo ports, visit the OncoPower education library and watch four short illustrative videos presented by our patient navigator.
Talk to your oncologist today if having a port for cancer treatments is right for you. Our team of medical professionals at OncoPower are standing by to answer all your questions.
Virginia, United States
I am a HER2 negative ER positive stage IV breast cancer patient. Last year, wonderful doctors here suggested me to test for PIK3CA mutation (cobas® PIK3CA Mutation Test). It was found positive.
My Newport Beach oncologist put me Piqray + Faslodex combo since nine months. I got test reports two months in a row. THANK GOD, my tumor is stable! Thank you Doctors! I urge members with stage 4 cancer here not to lose hope or give up.
Florida, United States
I had posted last year about my husband who has been diagnosed with stage 3 esophageal cancer. His is an esophageal squamous cell carcinoma type, so there was a consensus among his oncologist at FCS and Oncopower doctors here that Opdivo + Yervoy is the best option I am happy to share an update that he is doing well. His appetite has increased, follows recommended diet and regained some of the weight. We will keep our fingers crossed though!
Pennsylvania, United States
That is why i like this app .. always incorporating alternative and complimentary services that are effective.
Iowa , United States
Dr. Josh McFarlane, Thank you. I am planning to subscribe for premium service, and work with Dt. Tlemcani, the breast oncologist recommended by many patients here.
Western Cape, South Africa
Wow, thank you so very much ! I have no words for your kindness and support. I appreciate it very much!
Floroda United States
I have used it. Dr. T, Dr. Luini, Dr. Shah and Dr. Koduru are all very passionate about patients. I recommend it any day because you can get multiple doctors to take a look at the issue.
The tool is super easy. I can’t think of a more affordable online doctor service.
Florida, United States
Yes, by the Grace of God, there we go 🫂 † What helps me is music, has always relaxed me. I too had chemo and almost done with radiation treatments to treat breast cancer, along with surgery. I empathize with you and so blessed to have found this awesome app as well. Made me so happy to know there are doctors here to advise me along with other feedbacks from many others going thru the same or similar as me. When two or more gather 🤗 stay strong 💪
New York, United States
My husband is a Stage IIIB non small cell lung cancer, unresectable. Underwent concurrent chemotherapy with radiation therapy and now on Imfinzi maintenance since November 2020. So far okay.
Docs, Thank you all here for suggestions. Warriors for your support.
California, United States
Thank you guys .This App is great A lot of support.