African Americans with breast cancer who want to connect.
Posted on: Jun 15, 2008 09:10PM - edited Jun 16, 2008 01:32AM by towens88
Posts 1 - 30 (38 total)
Jun 17, 2008 01:40AM trumpet84 wrote:
Hi Towens. I had a port in my arm; my hospital used this location as 'standard' (vs. the chest) so I did not have a decision to make. I have very bad veins and wanted to avoid the "search and find sticks".
The port was put in on a Friday and I had my first chemo that Monday (FEB). The next weekend I was in the emergency room with a swollen arm and tingling in my hand; a blood clot developed in the port vein. The doctors put me on a blood thinner (Lovenox.... to prevent other clots from forming) which I have to inject myself twice a day in the abdomen area.
They removed the port the same day as my last chemo treatment, I still have the clot, and I am still on the blood thinner. The clot (chronic) will take time to absorb back into the body and I do not know how much longer I will be on the injections.
From what I understand, most folks do not have major problems with the ports. Let me know how it goes!
Jun 17, 2008 04:06AM rogam wrote:
I had a power port put in my chest on a friday and started chemo 2weeks later. It was a little uncomfortable at first. I have gotten use to it and could not imagine getting stuck in the arm for treatments each time. Feel free to send a private email with your number and i can call ya if you would like. Take care.
Jun 17, 2008 04:13AM - edited Jun 17, 2008 04:14AM by lLinda
I had my port put in, the left side of my chest July 2002--I did not know there were other places they could go, either. On the 3rd day it itched so bad, I called the Emergncy Room, they thought I might be allergic to the material--however, I took Benadryl 100 mg and Motrin 800 mg and it settled it all down, I have not had any other problems with it, until it was not used for a year, and there was swelling around it and that went away. I do need it for the navelbine and some of the other Chemo I have had to have--I think I will leave it in as long as it does not bother me. I have a friend that has had hers in now for over 20 years. It is another surgery to have it removed I hear, and I am never ready for those!!!
Jun 21, 2008 03:15AM towens88 wrote:
Thank you for the info on the port. I got it put in on a Thursday and started chemo this past Tuesday. We tried the numbing cream but it was still very sore once she put it in. I am also experiencing some itching, but I am going in to see my surgeon on Monday to mention that to her. I did get it put in my chest, so it's been a little hard to sleep. Pray for me ladies! I am trying to get through this!
Jul 4, 2008 01:09AM judyaec wrote:
I wish you the best of luck with your Chemo. I had a mediport put in my chest for breast cancer chemo 2 years ago. I never had any problems until recently. I was getting pain in the port area my last 2 treatments and it turns out that there was a small hole in the tube. I just had the port removed this past Monday and will have another one put in in about 4 to 6 weeks after the area has healed. I wish you the best of luck. My prayers will be with you.
Jul 7, 2008 03:51PM Ejay wrote:
Medi-ports make the chemo easier but if you have high allergies or sensativities like me...it drove me nuts! I'm evidently allergic to the suture material and itched from the moment it went in (Nov 2007) until now (it was removed 3/24 - 3+ mths ago). The doc is hoping my body accepts the material or they'll have to go back in and re-suture it.
But no worries, I'm allergic to tons of things so I wasn't surprised. I still have steri-stip bandage marks from my mastectomy 3/24/08.
Is there anyone else sensative to medications, etc. like I am?
Jul 9, 2008 05:40AM towens88 wrote:
I agree Ejay. I am finding out that I am also allergic and sensitive to things I wasn't aware of. I am also still experiencing some itching and soreness around my port area. I had it put in on 6-12-08. I had chemo today and it is still sore when I have chemo. The Emla cream isn't very effective. I also had an allergic reaction to morphine after my mastectomy. I was itching severely all over!
Thank you all for your prayers. I am now adjusting to my recent hair loss. I had braids and took them out on the 4th. Take care.
Jul 10, 2008 12:04AM jerseymaria wrote:
i had my port put in april 06...not one problem with it. i have extremely sensitive skin so use the lidocaine creme (or emla...same thing) what i learned was to put the creme on very heavy at least 1 hour before my appt. by time nurse accesses the port it's usually 1 1/2 hours and skin is very numb. had herceptin today and didn't feel a thing. a few times nurse overshot the numb area and i let her know pronto. you're in my prayers...yes it's very very hard, but you will get thru it especially with all the love and knowlege you'll find her. hugs, maria
Jul 12, 2008 08:22PM controlmydestiny wrote:
I had a power port placed 6/18/08 and it has only been used twice to get blood work and to be flushed. Still have minimum pain and some pain later own after they use it but bareable. I just found out yesterday about the cream and got rx. Can't hardly feel but pressure when it has been used in onc office.
Apr 24, 2009 04:10AM lLinda wrote:
I am sorry to hear your Mom is having pain in her neck up to her ear, because of her port surgery. My thought--Call the Dr.---just because!!! It could be many things and they would be the ones to say what.
Each person probably feels different things with these surgeries, my itched so bad on the 3rd day, I called the Emergency room staff--1st they thought I may be allergic to the type of material the port was made of--I thought-Oh,,No--surgery again to take it out!! They ask how much Benadryl I had taken, and advised I could take some more. My Sis told me that "itching was a form of pain", I had taken Benadryl, so then I took Motrin and it got quiet.
Call the Dr.----let us know how it goes for Mom.
Apr 24, 2009 08:06PM twins110206 wrote:
TY ILinda, the doctors and nurses that she had yesterday were jerks. She kept telling them when they did it that it wasn't all the way numb and they proceeded anyway. She is doing better today but says it is still sore. Ty again for reply. She is diagnosed with invasive ductal carcinoma grade 3 stage 2-3. 0 nodes ER-/PR-.She visits on here also and goes by cashiertina. TY so very much and good luck to you.
Apr 25, 2009 04:36AM lLinda wrote:
I am sorry to hear the DRs. and RNs. were jerks---this is not the time!!!
I am glad she is better today, she may be sore a few days.
Does your city have a phone number for "Medical Questions" like an "Ask an Nurse"--we had one and it was nice, we don't have one now, like I said, I will call the Emergency Room staff in a minute if I can't get intouch with a Dr.---most times they will give an answer or say, come in!!
Hope to see that your Mom posts here--we will be glad to share!!!
Sep 5, 2009 04:31PM metroplex wrote:
Is a mediport/power port/portacath absolutely necessary? What are the risks of undergoing chemotherapy (taxotere carboplatin / herceptin for breast cancer) using a regular IV? Is the stuff so toxic that it will cause necrosis of the skin/muscle, or will it only be temporary damage? I'm trying to do a risk analysis for my mom because her sister (my aunt) didn't use a power port when she underwent chemo for her colon cancer.
Sep 6, 2009 05:55AM - edited Sep 6, 2009 05:58AM by lLinda
Wishing the best for your Mom and you along this journey.
When I first had Chemo, I had Adramycin and Cytoxan( to me they were the worst of Chemo), I had 4 of each med. I was determined I was not going to have a port put in--I did get through all 8 of the treatments--now, it did leave me with some "not good veins", this was back in 1999. In 2002 when the CA came back and the Dr. said I had to be on Herceptin and Navalbine and was told the longer the better--I opted for a port, it was another surgery, and after a Mastectomy in May 02(left breast) and 3 weeks later( the right breast) 3 weeks later, the port---wheeee, I am glad it is there--I have had to use it a lot--and I don't mean to frighten you--it is just how this disease can take a turn. I had to have some tests last week and the Nurse ask did I have a "power port", I am not sure what it does, but since I did not have it, she could not put the med in my port that they used for a CT Scan, (she found a vein after 2 trys)so I wondered if my type of port is not the type of port being used today--it has not given me problems and that was 7 years ago. I never think about if I was not on Chemo to have it removed--it don't bother me, I don't want them bothering "it".
It certainly is an individual decision. What is the Dr. saying? Once again, these meds affect people differently. I suspect if she chooses not to have a port, it should be that she can change her mind--there could be a delay in treatment, would be the only other holdup. I hope some of the other Ladies will "Weigh In" and give some support for you and Mom.
Take care and good luck.
Sep 7, 2009 04:41PM nasharayne wrote:
metroplex - I also received the same combo of drugs your mom will be receiving so, I am assuming she will be on herceptin for a year. I got chemo every three weeks x 6 plus my herceptin was weekly during chemo. Now it is herceptin every three weeks until March. I had surgery before chemo so, I only had one arm available for use. I also got pretty sick after my first chemo (I thought I was stronger than the chemo....it won) so, I was in the hospital and had to go in and get fluids a few times. With the port, i avoided additional sticks.
With your aunts cancer you are comparing apples to oranges so, I would not take that into consideration unless she had the exact treatment plan which is doubtful.
Needless to say I got a port and I haven't had any problems with it. However, everyone is different. I'm young (32) with no other medical problems. But, to answer your question, chemo is harsh on the veins but, I haven't heard of it causing necrosis.
I hope this helps with your decision. If you have any other questions please come back to ask. Good luck to you and your mom.
Sep 13, 2009 12:05PM - edited Sep 13, 2009 12:07PM by metroplexShe was admitted to the ER for extreme abdominal pains. She couldn't keep in any fluids or food, even water would cause her to vomit. They did more tests and scans and found the met on the liver had grown. She was fitted with a mediport and they gave her 488 mg of Herceptin as a first run.
It seemed the doctors were pissed off that we didn't have her install the mediport right away because it was the most comfortable route. My aunt went through chemotherapy about 10 years and she was never fitted with a mediport. So basically the doctors refused to start chemo because they didn't have access to a mediport.
Sep 16, 2009 07:12AM lLinda wrote:
I am praying and wishing the best for your Mom.
I do not feel it was fair for the Drs to get mad---when this is going on, even with the Drs telling people things--it is too much to take in at the time--you can't think at times--I am sorry for your Mom. I am glad this part is over for her and hope she has no problems. You all hang in there and keep us posted.
Sep 24, 2009 03:16PM ReneeJean wrote:
I had a powerport placed yesterday and my neck and chest hurt worse than after my bil MX! Is this normal. I am pretty swollen in my chest area to around my TE on that side but not on my neck. But there is not a movement I make that isn't painful. I am sure this is normal healing, but tyelnol/motrin/aleve don't touch it and I only had moderate releif from norco. I mean on my worst pain day from my surgery I was a 4-5/10....I am staying between 8-9/10 even with the above meds. And they wanted to start Chemo today--I think if they had to touch this sight I would have come unglued. I guess I just need to know if this is normal or not.....
Sep 25, 2009 04:40PM bar62 wrote:
I had a Power Port placed last October and because I changed my Onc...he was weird nasty little man...I had two sessions of chemo with 7 weeks in between. I had my port placed by Diagnostic Radiology and it's never been a problem. It did itch for a while but a friend calmed me with the thought that it might be healing. I'm keeping it for a while since I'm Triple Negative and didn't have aggressive chemo. I hope they'll flush it if I ask to keep it...who knows.
I used my one good vein with my first Onc who told me taking Methotrexate for my Rheumatoid Arthritis--which helped--caused my BC and that vein is a goner.
fingers xxed I can keep this port for a while longer
Sep 26, 2009 05:34AM lLinda wrote:
I don't think it should hurt "like that"-- it did hurt, no lie, but!!---I know for each person is different.
On my third day I thought I would go crazy--because it "itched so bad", I called the Emergency room--they thought I may be allergic to the product the port was made of--I took Motrin 800mgm and then 100 mgm of Benedryl and it got "quiet". My sis told me "itching is a form of pain. So the meds worked. I would call the Dr.
I had the Surgeon that put mine in--it has been 7 years and the only problem(I see I had posted no problems, in an earler post--chemo brain can cause you to not think, sometimes I think) was when I was on chemo pills for a year and my Onc said it did not need to be flushed--when we had to use it again, it was like the meds would seep out, they done an x-ray on it and reported that it was working properly. I start chemo again on Mon. and I do have some anxities about this, as I have not used this port for 9 months. I never think about getting it removed unless it causes me problems, that surgery was not one I care to go through again--I don't care if it is only "day surgery"
Mina--follow your own mind about them flushing!!
Oct 1, 2009 01:15AM Dolores wrote:
My port only itch the first month or so. Now I don't even feel it there. I will keep my port in for at least another year to complete Herceptin. Good Luck and God bless and keep you ladies.
Oct 1, 2009 05:12AM lLinda wrote:
On Monday I had to use my port again, it had not been used since last Oct, when we stopped the Navelbine chemo. I had not had it flushed and was concerned about this, but forgot about it once I got there. I was thankful there was no problems with it.
Oct 3, 2009 05:37PM nasharayne wrote:
ILinda - Sorry you had to use your port again but, thank God it was there. I thought they said the port should be flushed every 4 weeks when not in use. Well no worries now. Good luck!
Oct 4, 2009 05:09AM lLinda wrote:
I thought that the port was to be flushed every 3 months---well, and that was information at least 10 years ago, however, my Dr, had told me it was not necessary to flush it, and that was 3 years ago when I was on Xeloda for a while. I was not happy but went along with it and likewise this time (not to have it flushed) I was so glad not to see that Center, Yep--I went along with it!! Yeah, I am glad I still have it too.