Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Peter the Power Port Thug is out!

Warning - more gross skin pictures in this post! So if this sort of stuff bothers you, close the page - fast! Otherwise, scroll down...

Ok, you're still with me. Here we go!

Today I got the port out. Here's what it looked like yesterday while still in my chest:

The black dot is not a scab - it's part of the port that's erupted through my skin. Think Sigourney Weaver and the Alien movies and you get a small sense of what this looks like. Although it's not infected and I  haven't been running a temperature, the oncologist was pretty convinced that this was a risk that we no longer could tolerate. So out it came!

The procedure for removing it is pretty straightforward. Numb things up locally, dig around for a bit with some typical surgical tools (the thoracic surgeon had me turn my head the other way so I can't report on what tools he used ) but there was a fair amount of grinding, grunting and pulling while he got it to come off my pectoral muscle and out through the previous incision.

Here's a picture of my chest post removal:

I'm sure that will heal up nicely with no scaring. Right...

And here's the bad boy himself, safely ensconced in a biohazard bag.

I was a bit bummed leaving the surgeon's office. I've spent the last few months thinking about how cool it will be to get the port out as this would indicate I was done with chemo. But that's not the way it turned out. I'm only about 45% done. So I get 13 days without any funky hardware in my body and then I get the PICC line. It will be a bit of a PITA (Pain In The Ass). Needs to be flushed every day so another job for my awesome wing-woman to take on. I'm not sure how many activities I can do with my upper body with a PICC line installed but the chemo nurses tell me that they have some very active patients with PICC lines so I'm hopeful I'll still able to do most things.


  1. Bad news about the port, but excellent news about NED! (See, cancer is just like IT - all about the acronyms.) So glad to hear that the war is being won and the end is in sight.

  2. yup, definitely heading in the right direction! And thx so much for the books. Just finished the Gone Away World. What a great read! I especially like the bwa-ha-ha-ha phrases to indicate pure evil. And of course The Forever War is a classic, too.

  3. Fun fact: Nick Harkaway is the son of John le Carre (the spy thriller guy). Glad you liked it. I think any writer brave enough to describe martial arts moves deserves special kudos. (Or would that be "judos"?)