Thursday, June 17, 2010

Jeanine's port

On Wednesday, Jeanine went in to get a port which allows them to give her her treatment with little pain. What should have been a 20 minute procedure turned out to be a 2 hour torture chamber.

They used ultrasound and found that her jugular vein on the right side (the preferred side) was too small for the catheter, so they put the port in on the left. This complicated the procedure, but even so shouldn't have resulted in the problems that she had.

She was supposed to be awake but numbed enough so that it wouldn't be an issue. It ended up that she has very tough skin and tissue and threading the catheter from the shoulder to the jugular vein was a very tough job. The way she described it, made me think of trying to feed a plumbing snake through a really bad clog in your drains. They pushed and rammed and pushed and rammed. That wasn't the only problem either. Once they got to the vein, they had to do the very same thing. Talk about painful! She ended up with dose after dose of painkiller that didn't do a thing to make her feel better.

But... the procedure is done and it should make getting her weekly treatment much easier. They almost always have a tough time finding her veins and she gets poke after poke in different locations on her body. One time they actually had to use the bottom of her foot for an IV. The port will allow them to take blood and to give medicine and even do tests that require IV's. Even so, I don't think that she will ever allow them to put in a port again unless she is sedated.

She is still sore from the procedure. She also has trouble swallowing because of pain in her bruised esophagus, but she went to the temple with us last night and watched her niece and nephew today, so she is not totally debilitated.

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