Oncologist Dr. Stephen Lemon from Oncology Associates in Omaha, Nebraska explains how a port-a-cath is used for cancer treatment during chemotherapy. Visit http://oacancer.com/patient-info/resources/video/medical-minutes/ to watch more videos on cancer treatment.
Medical Minute cancer information videos are produced by Dr. Stephen J. Lemon, who is a medical oncologist who now works with the Overlake Cancer Center in Bellevue, WA. These videos were produced to provide useful cancer information to cancer patients and survivors..
Oncology Associates provides a full range of personalized cancer care at two Omaha clinics as well as at cancer treatment clinics throughout Nebraska.
The physicians of Oncology Associates include:
* Irina E. Popa, MD
To learn more about OA’s approach to personalized cancer treatment as well as about the oncologists and staff, please visit http://www.oacancer.com
Using a portacath during chemotherapy – Dr. Stephen Lemon
Portacaths, or ports, are vascular access devices used for the treatment of chemotherapy that is given intravenously.
Portacaths sit under the skin and the catheter goes into a large vein. This helps in the chemotherapy administration, and can also be used to draw blood for blood counts and blood tests. This is also a safe way to give chemotherapy, with less chance of the chemotherapy leaking out of the vein and causing damage to skin or other tissues.
The portacath, shown here, is accessed with a needle that goes through the skin and into the portacath chamber. So blood fills the chamber, and can be withdrawn through the needle to have blood tests done before chemotherapy. And then at the time of chemotherapy treatment the chemo drug is given through the needle into the chamber, and then into the vein through the catheter.
At the completion of your chemotherapy treatment the needle will be removed from the port and from the skin so that when you go home there isn’t any needle or any catheters or anything that requires care. Simply keep the skin clean and dry.
Once a patient’s cancer treatment is completed and they no longer require chemotherapy, the portacath can be removed as a simple outpatient procedure. Sometimes your doctor may ask you to keep the portacath in for a little bit longer in case of additional blood draws or possible additional treatment.
If a portacath is going to be maintained after the completion of cancer treatment it needs to be flushed once a month to prevent blood clots from forming in the catheter.
To watch more videos visit http://www.canceris.net and http://www. oacancer.com.