Sunday, October 2, 2011

Woman With a Power Port Coming Through

Monday morning, at 5:45 a.m., I report to the hospital for outpatient surgery.  Dr. Martin will be inserting my "Power Port", which is an implantable device that will make life easier...or so I've been told. 

One of the side-effects of chemotherapy is that your veins are often damaged during the process.  This especially happens when drugs are administered intravenously.   My oncologist wants me to have an implanted catheter inserted to assist with chemotherapy, as well as with blood draws and injections.

The surgery takes approximately thirty minutes, and is performed as an out-patient procedure.  While under general anesthesia, a small port will be inserted into my chest.  An incision will be made on my left side, and the port inserted.  Looking at the picture, you can see how the port inserts directly into a vein.  Think of it like a permanent IV for a while.  The port will be one of my lifelines.  Chemotherapy treatments and any "sticks" will use the port after it is inserted.

It is a triangular shaped object, and has three raised "bumps".  Providers and nurses can feel the bumps under the skin, and then know where the "hole" is.  One of the best things is that I have been prescribed numbing cream when the port will be inserted.  The cream is applied approximately thirty minutes prior to my appointment, and will numb the skin over the port.  After the cream is applied, I have been instructed to place a piece of plastic wrap over the site.  There will now be a roll of plastic wrap in my first aid supplies!

Monday afternoon, I have another appointment with Dr. Jones, my oncologist for final instructions before chemotherapy.  My first chemotherapy treatment will be Thursday, October 6. 

After Monday's surgery, I may have the power to set off security alarms, due to the small amount of metal in the port. Security systems may or may not pick up the metal, but I will have the medical information card to show authorities.  It's not a weapon setting of the security system, just another one of the perks I'm getting during this cancer diagnosis!


1 comment:

tracy said...

Shelby, as a sci-fi geek the first thing that came to mind is that you now have a portal to another demention!

i am glad you have the port now, its gonna make things a lot easier. i am sorry to hear that you can set off alarms,(as if one needs another reason to hate going through air port security!
all our best to you anuntie!