Monday, October 4, 2010

Today I got a "Purple Heart"

This morning I woke at 5am.  I tossed and turned and could not go back to sleep.  I think subconsciously I'm very concerned for the upcoming procedures / treatments.  I guess I am consciously  nervous about them as well.  I was not looking forward to my alarm going off at 7am when I would get up and go the hospital for port implantation surgery.  I'm always very nervous about things that I have to stay awake for, like this surgery.

Larry and I got to the hospital at 8am and checked in for the appt.  My radiology nurse came in to give me an IV.  This is something I am very used to; I've had several IV's before.  She found a spot on my wrist where she wanted to give me the IV.  It was on the top of my wrist, right where it bends.  She got it on the first try, but for some reason the IV was very painful after.  I was hoping this was not indicative of how the rest of the procedure was going to go.

The next thing she did was bring me the actual port to show me what it looked like before they put it in.  And then the most WONDERFUL thing happened.  The port was small, and purple, and in the shape of a heart.  OMGSH.  What could be cuter?  All the sudden I was not so scared to have that put in me for the next few months.  It's super cute. :)

See???? I you're jealous right? :)

Anyway, here's how the procedure went........

They took me back to surgery. It was a sterile surgical room with about 5 or 6 people getting ready for me. I moved over to the surgery table and they started the "prep". They sterilized the area where the port was going to be placed (on my right side from my neck down to just below my collar bone). They draped the area and had me look the opposite way, so I couldn't see anything they were doing. I was able to look at my nurse and tell her if I was in any pain. Just as they started the procedure my nurse gave me some type of "meds" in my IV. I could tell they were working because when I looked at the ceiling it started moving. I think they used Versed and Phentanol. I got really sleepy, but was not 100% asleep. The doctor came in and told me he was ready to start and I would feel a little pain at first as they numbed the area with lidocaine. I felt about 4-5 shots, you know little pinches. But then I drifted out for a bit. When I woke up I felt a lot of pushing and tugging as they were placing the port. was over. Seriously, not as painful as I anticipated and....I ended up with a cute port!
I have 2 incisions. The larger one is just below my collar bone, and a smaller one a little higher on my neck. No biggie.
The incisions will heal, and the port is placed completely under my skin. It looks like a little bump. You won't get to see the purple, and the only time it will look like a heart is in an x-ray. But the fact that I know it's a purple heart made me happy!

Today, I've been sore.  It's been hard to move too quickly or turn my head.  I'm sure that will wear off within the next couple of days.

Thursday is my PET scan.  They won't be able to use my port for that because they use a high amount of sugar ( cancer likes sweets, go figure)  and it could make the port sticky.

I had read that once you have a port in you can't lift anything over 15 lbs.  Well, I have an "almost 3" year old that weighs about 30 lbs.  I was sad I could not lift her.  Well, today I asked my doctor if that was the case and he said NO!!!!  I can lift my girl, not problem!   YAY!!!  Great news!


  1. I love to read your posts and hear your inspiring attitude! We're praying.

  2. It's almost like I am right there with ya! (wish i was) I can even see your facial expression when you say "it's super cute" :) Love you Jenn we are praying for you! Kristy