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Overview

Port placement is a medical procedure to implant a small medical device under the skin. This device includes a catheter that connects the port to a vein, and the port has a septum through which fluids can be injected and blood samples can be drawn many times, usually with less discomfort than a typical needle stick.

Who is a candidate?

Generally, ports are used for patients requiring frequent administration of chemotherapy, blood transfusions, antibiotics, intravenous feeding or blood draws.

What to expect

This outpatient procedure is minimally invasive and requires local anesthesia. Port placement requires two incisions in the neck and one in the chest wall. After surgery, patients may experience some bruising, swelling and tenderness where the port is placed, but these symptoms usually go away gradually over the first 3-5 days. Once healed, the port should not affect daily activities such as bathing. When the port is no longer needed, it can be surgically removed in another outpatient procedure.

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