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Chemoport questions


Hi all,

Tomorrow I have port placement. I'm pretty anxious, and I have some specific questions if anyone can help?

First - how soon after the surgery can you shower/wash hair? I assume you aren't allowed to get the incisions wet for some time. Not that that really matters I soon wont have any hair. But I'm keeping it as long as I can for some stupid reason.

Second - once it's healed, how obvious will it be? I love to wear strappy sundresses (even though I'm probably too old for that anyway) - but should I just bundle them all up now and give them away?

I'm feeling so low. Both boobs scarred up from cancer twice now on opposite sides, hysterectomy and oophorectomy after tamoxifen caused problems after first round of bc, and now once again soon to be bald, and then grey for ages, and months of feeling sick and ill, and on top of that am I going to be wearing high neck modesty clothing for the rest of my life?

I'm beginning to wonder what the point of all this is.

Hint - I am hoping someone will say something optimistic - and definitely keep on with those dresses.



  • spookiesmom
    spookiesmom Member Posts: 8,168

    I’ve had my port since 2012. Depending on where your Dr puts it, shouldn’t be visible. Ask him/her before surgery. Mine wouldn’t be. You will be told about getting it wet, and I do remember not picking up more than 5 pounds for a while. So I couldn’t pick up Spookie at 8#. It’s usually an easy surgery, might need a Tylenol. Have a small pillow or towel to put under seatbelt coming home.

  • norcals
    norcals Member Posts: 206

    Hi. The port placement procedure was pretty quick and easy for me. I was awake and talking to the surgeon during the procedure. He said that he likes to make the incision near the collar bone so that the incision line is less noticeable. I have very little fat around the upper chest area so the port was noticeable when it was in if I wore strapless top. If I wore a top with straps or a low neck top, you can’t see the port. However, I have been told that if I had a little more fat around the upper chest, the port would not have been as noticeable even if I wore a strapless top. I removed the port about 3.5 years after it was put in. The scar is minimal and I can definitely wear summer dresses with straps.

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,746
    edited August 2023

    As spookiesmom said, where the port is placed determines visibility. Mine is in a little hollow where my shoulder meets my chest. I am quite slim. It is not visible with many sleeveless garments but would be visible with spaghetti straps but as I’m nearing 70, I tend not to wear those type of clothes outside of the house but you should wear whatever you like and feel comfortable with. Even when it is visible, I don’t mind and few actually notice or at least they don’t comment. Talk to your doctor about placement.
    I had another procedure done at the same time my port was installed so my showering restrictions had to do with that rather than the port. As for hair washing, there should be no restrictions (apart from possibly not getting the port site wet). Leaning over a sink or using a hand held shower should take care of it. For most, port placement is an easy procedure . Since your concern is visibility of the port, I am not sure that thin straps could hide it regardless of placement.

    My port:

    This is a Bard Power Port so it has three little palpación bumps that almost form a triangle. Other brands have more of a circular profile.

  • laughinggull
    laughinggull Member Posts: 511
    edited August 2023

    I had mine placed on the upper quadrant of the non-cancer breast. I could wear anything including swimsuits. Able to shower immediately, including running water over the incision (drs covered it with some patch compatible with showering) ; I was sore the next day, went for a light jog to get over the anesthesia and the soreness, and that worked wonders. By the second day I was fine.

  • londongirl99
    londongirl99 Member Posts: 23

    Thank you all!

    Procedure was yesterday. I don't know what drugs they gave me, but I didn't feel anything and don't remember much either. Perfect!!

    They glued the incisions together and then covered them with a plastic film which means I can shower today. Once they've healed a bit they'll be very hard to see, and the port itself isn't too obvious.

    The staff said they'd look forward to seeing me back when the time came to take it out.

    I'll post a photo in a week or two in case other people come along and are wondering.

    Weekend blessings to all,


  • laughinggull
    laughinggull Member Posts: 511

    Great news Londongirl. Step by step…this is an important one.