Treatment Step 1: Install the Port

I feel like I’m becoming a Borg. I’ve just had new hardware installed, a chemo port. I had my choice between having a port put into my chest, or having PIC lines hanging out of my arm. I know me. PIC lines would have been a disaster, so I am now sporting a chemo port right under my collar bone with a data port in my neck. For now, I look like I got shot with a .22 in my neck. Guess I should hook it up to my Amazon account so I can download MP3s. Just kidding.

The surgery was short and sweet. The brain fog, not so much. I woke up, had a couple of crackers and some water and was sent to the surgery waiting room to relax while I waited for my bone scan. In hindsight, I’d probably not have done both on the same day. I was in surgery at 7:20-ish in the morning. I was out of recovery by 9:30. I think. I had to set my alarm on my phone for the time of the bone scan or I’d either forget or fall asleep and miss it. Turns out that sleeping, even when heavily sedated, is near impossible in the surgery waiting room. There’s just so much activity in there, it’s crazy. There was one lady playing solitaire with cards, and just the acoustics of the room and the table she was playing on made it sound like she was doing so very angrily. I found it vaguely amusing. To be honest, everything in those hours was vague.

When the time came to head up to radiology, I called for my chariot and got a ride upstairs. I had a nice big glass of water, started to fall asleep in the scanner, had some more water and by the time I was done, my brain fog was finally starting to lift. I felt more or less normal by the time I was sitting at the pharmacy around 1:30 pm.

Note to self: Find out what kind of anesthesia they used in Houston for one of the knee surgeries where I woke up feeling normal right out of the gate.

After I got home, I sat in my recliner and tried to sleep a little. I dozed a little. I relaxed a bit and watched a little TV. My neck was probably the most sore, but it was just a dull ache mostly. I never needed the big guns pain meds. I have taken just Tylenol and ibuprofen and was able to stop both of those in the past couple of days. It’s getting easier to turn my head now, and I am noticing it less and less.

What happens next treatment wise is that I need an echocardiogram to baseline my readings. Chemo can do nasty things to your heart, so they want to know where we’re starting. I’ll get one of these every 2 or 3 months throughout.

Chemo treatments start the week after Thanksgiving where they’ll use a special needle to inject the drugs into the port through an IV. I have a session next week to learn how to care for the port and learn more about getting chemo. I think we’re also talking about meeting the nutritionist and a naturopathic oncologist (someone who helps with the side effects of chemo through diet, supplements and acupuncture), and a bevy of other things I don’t have an agenda for yet.

 

About Pink Ribbon Road

This blog is about receiving and living with a breast cancer diagnosis.
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One Response to Treatment Step 1: Install the Port

  1. Pingback: The Spiritual Side | The Pink Ribbon Road

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