The portacath insertion is carried out in an angiography suite at Mercy Angiography within the Mercy Hospital, 98 Mountain Road in Epsom. Your Interventional Radiologist will be assisted by nurses and other highly trained staff.
- You will be given sedation to make you feel relaxed and sleepy but you will be still aware during the procedure. The procedure is done using local anaesthesia at the insertion site.
- The skin over the front of the chest and the side of the neck are cleaned well with disinfectant swabs.
- Local anaesthetic is administered to the skin over the chest site.
- Ports are usually placed on the chest wall. An incision of approximately 3cm is made in skin on the fron of the chest and a “pocket” is created under the skin for the port.
- Local anaesthetic is administered to the side of the neck and using ultrasound guidance, access is gained to the vein in the neck, via a small (5mm) incision.
- The tube (catheter) is then fed through the vein until the tip of the catheter is sitting in one of the large veins in your chest.
- A small tunnel is made in the skin for the tube to pass through and the other end is connected to the port.
- Correct positioning of the catheter is confirmed by fluoroscopy (using x-ray).
- The incisions under the collar bone and the side of the neck closed with dissolvable sutures (stitches) and a small sterile dressing is put in place.
Following the procedure in the angiosuite, you will spend 1 - 2 hours in recovery in a recliner chair within Mercy Angiography, following which you will discharged if everything is normal.
At Mercy Angiography all ports are compatible with having an injection for CT scans (‘Powerport’). The port must be accessed with a powerloc® needle for administration of CT contrast (dye). You will be given a wallet card describing the port to carry with you to all medical appointments.