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Port

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trv4764
trv4764 Member Posts: 22

I just finished chemo and am trying to figure out if I want my port removed. Initially I wanted it out ASAP but then my nurse and oncologist said that I would be having blood work done every 3-6 months for now and it might be worth it to keep it in.

I would appreciate hearing how long other people kept theirs in

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  • star2017
    star2017 Member Posts: 370
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    I decided to get mine taken out fairly quickly, when I went in for reconstruction. I had seen my mother keep hers for years, having to go regularly for port cleanings, etc, and dealing with the discomfort. I didn't want that. She also eventually had hers removed.

  • lw422
    lw422 Member Posts: 1,401
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    I had mine removed about a month after my mastectomy. When I got a pCR my oncologist said it could be removed. I didn't want to deal with having it flushed every 6 weeks or so and I couldn't wait to have that thing out of my neck.

  • spookiesmom
    spookiesmom Member Posts: 8,176
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    Mine has been in since 2012. I don’t want it out. Yes I go every 6 weeks for a flush, but it makes it so much easier for labs. Someday I may need it again. I also didn’t want to go through the hassle of getting it out.

  • mozuke1
    mozuke1 Member Posts: 39
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    I got mine out as soon as they would let me. I found that even at my large hospital system they often wouldn't have staff who could access my port for simple labs or for mri or PET/CT contrast or tracer. Only at the cancer center did they always have staff who could use my port. Plus, I hated it. I'm stage 4, so will likely be back on IV chemo eventually, but my MO totally supported my wish to have it taken out.


    ETA: I had hysterectomy a month after chemo ended, got my port out a month after that…

  • candy-678
    candy-678 Member Posts: 4,099
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    I have had a Port for 5+ years. When we first found my cancer we thought it was Stage 2. Port was placed and chemo started. Then we found the mets. They kept the Port in due to uncertainty of my future. Since I have been stable, I have asked my MO about removing it and she always says NO. It works ok and doesn't cause any issues, so they don't want to mess with it. If not broke why fix it mentality. And being Stage 4 I will have to go back to chemo at some point. But..... I don't like it. Something foreign in my body. Reminder of my cancer. Bra rubs it. Seat belt rubs it. I want it out. And put another in when it is needed again. I am going to ask my MO again after the next scans (if they are stable).

  • kotchaj
    kotchaj Member Posts: 211
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    I got mine out as soon as I could. When I talked to my surgeon about it, he said if I needed it again, we'd just put one back in. That took a lot of that anxiety away from me and made me feel so much better. I also liked to sleep on my right side and it poked me and I couldn't. I also felt like I was putting one more step between me and the cancer diagnosis that I had and fought through. I hope I never have to have it replaced. If I do, I will, but for now, I am enjoying it being gone.

  • cowgirl13
    cowgirl13 Member Posts: 774
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    As Mozuk said: "I found that even at my large hospital system they often wouldn't have staff who could access my port for simple labs or for mri or PET/CT contrast or tracer. Only at the cancer center did they always have staff who could use my port."

    This is very true - they just don't have the trained staff. I had to have mine in for a year because I was on Herceptin but had my port out within several days of my last infusion.


  • elainetherese
    elainetherese Member Posts: 1,627
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    I had my port in for 7+ years before I had it removed. I did have to get the thing flushed ever 6-8 weeks, but I was going in for Zoladex every month so that wasn't a problem. It turns out, though, that the longer you keep your port, the more difficult it is to remove. Plus, the longer you keep it, the greater the likelihood of problems. So, I had it removed last Fall.

  • pnw
    pnw Member Posts: 36
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    I had my port installed Oct. 2022 and it never fit. Healed poorly, hurt and itched, was very sensitive, it scraped against my rib cage - I hated it.

    Currently scheduled to have it removed in Feb. 2023, barely 5 months later. I would never have let them talk me into into having it installed to begin with if I had known it would become a permanent irritant. These ports are not as trouble free as they would have us believe.

  • olma61
    olma61 Member Posts: 1,024
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    I am stage IV and when my oncologist first spoke to me about a port I made a face and she said ok, how are your veins? Small, not the greatest, but she did not push for me to have the port.

    Yes, my diagnosis means lifetime treatment and I got poked with needles for IVs and blood work for 3 years. But now my medication is via injection so I only get “stuck” for bloods & scans…and I am very happy I do not have a port. No discomfort, no worries about hygiene/infection or having yet another visit to have it flushed, etc.

    They always found a vein for my chemo and they always find one now for bloods and I get tubes of blood taken every six weeks. If you want it out, have it out.

  • ruthbru
    ruthbru Member Posts: 47,038
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    I got mine out two weeks after my last chemo. Everyone has different feeling about ports; so this is just me, but I found it very uncomfortable plus it was a constant 'cancer' reminder. It was completely creepy & I was thrilled to get rid of it!!!!!

  • trv4764
    trv4764 Member Posts: 22
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    I agree with the creepiness part - I believe I will have it removed sooner rather than later. Thanks for all your replies!

  • Blinx
    Blinx Member Posts: 82
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    Good question! I've had mine in for 14 months. Tomorrow I have my last immunotherapy infusion. It IS a bit of an irritant, but I think I'll keep it in for now. It was so painful after it was put in, and difficult to access because of the swelling. All I know is it took a good 2 weeks for me to be able to sleep on that side. I know I'd be very hesitant to take it out only to require one in a year. Maybe when I feel more confident about being cancer free I'll think about having it removed.