preparing for the portacath

Tomorrow morning at 8am I will be headed into an outpatient surgery at Kaiser Sunset in Hollywood to install a portacath. I made the mistake of not reading much information about this, until tonight. Then I made the mistake of reading about it. Ironically the first four blogs I read were like the world’s greatest collection of portacath horror stories—infections, surgeons in training, wrong vein, wrong anesthesia, wrong placement, reinstallations, lung punctures, pain, and worse. It was actually bizarre. All I did was google “portacath”, and WHAM! Suddenly, I’m like sweating and ready to cancel! Then I just started laughing… this is too crazy!

Well, I decided to add some “happy words” to my search—like “glad” and “awesome”—hoping there was a happy land of portacath stories out there. Indeed, I found some good accounts, encouraging stories, and people who were really glad they got one. So the 1% chance of lung puncture aside, I’m praying for the best. I’m thinking of having two installed—one high on each side of my neck so I will look like Frankenstein.

The photo at top is what is being inserted (only one), somewhere near my collar bone. For one thing—it’s honkin’ big! I had no clue. But the point is, it will make the next six months (or more) of chemo and blood draws much easier and with less vein damage. So here we go…

I’ll be out of surgery around 9am and in my right mind somewhere around 10am. So I’ll keep you posted.

PS—don’t panic… the photo to the left is not me

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One Response to preparing for the portacath

  1. Jennifer McCary says:

    You have me laughing out loud, all alone with my dogs who are looking at me like I’m crazy!! Portacaths are not that big…and they are not very noticeable…you can’t see it through your shirt or anything like that…you won’t go to Wal Mart and have people pointing and saying ,”Wow look at the dude with the port a cath” =) LOL However, once the nurses start utilizing it you will be a happycamper and not question the wisdom of having it inserted!!

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