Chest Ports

A chest port is a small device placed entirely under the skin of a patient’s chest with a thin tube that runs under the skin up to a vein in the neck and down to one of the veins in the chest. Chest ports are usually placed in patients needing chemotherapy allowing a patient to safely and conveniently receive chemotherapy for as long as he or she needs. Chest ports may also be used for giving other IV fluids or medications, CT scan dye or blood draws.

Will people notice I have a chest port?

Chest ports are typically placed 3-4 inches below the collar bone and are not typically noticeable apart from a small scar on the neck.

What should I expect?

The procedure to place a chest port typically takes close to an hour. A combination of local anesthesia and sedation is used for patient comfort. Patients typically leave the hospital 1-2 hours after the procedure. You will have 2 small incisions, one on the neck and one on the chest. The port will be noticeable to you as a small bump on your chest.

How do I care for my port?

Avoid showering for 48 hours after the port is placed and until the incisions heal, you should try to keep them as clean and dry as possible.

Make sure you tell your radiologist about:

Any blood thinners or steroids you are taking, if you have had or will have radiation therapy or any planned chest surgery.

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