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Your doctor has recommended an implanted port for you. Here is a brief description of a port, and the answers to frequently asked questions about ports.

Contact Us

Speak to our clinical coordinator for any of your treatment concerns.

Hours: Mon-Fri 8 am–5 pm 
Phone: 801-581-2967

Hospital paging operator: 801-581-2121 
Ask for the interventional radiology resident on call.

Ports & Port Placement

A port is a small device with a hollow space inside that is sealed by a soft top. A port placement will allow medications to be given directly into your blood stream. The port is connected to a small flexible tube called a catheter. The port is implanted completely beneath your skin and the catheter is inserted inside a blood vessel, allowing the port to act like an IV to the bloodstream. 

A special needle inserted just below the surface of your skin and into the port will allow medications and fluids to be given and blood withdrawn. The port is made from special medical grade materials designed for safe long-term use in the human body.

Ports are often placed on the upper chest but may also be placed in other locations if needed. The port will be visible as merely as a small raised area beneath your skin.  Daily care is generally not required and it does not normally affect your normal activities.

Caring for Your Port

During the first few days after receiving the port, it will be important to avoid any heavy exertion. You must also do the following:

  • Keep the port incision covered with a clean and dry bandage. Leave steri-strips in place until the incision is well healed, usually 10–14 days. Any visible sutures will be removed at a two-week suture removal appointment.
  • Change the dressing over the sutures every three days or more often if soiled or wet.
  • Cover your dressing when showering with a heavy duty type baggie taped over the dressing. If the dressing becomes moist or damp in the shower change it immediately. 

Once the sutures and the steri-strips are removed, no special care of the skin site is needed. Report any redness, unexplained fever or signs of infection at the port site promptly to your physician or call interventional radiology at the numbers provided.

Cleaning Your Port

Prior to each use the skin will be cleansed and prepped by your nurse.

After each use of your port, it must be flushed with saline and a special solution to keep the port patent and in good working order. If the port is not used often it must be flushed and treated monthly. This will most likely be arranged by your physician and you will be instructed prior to your discharge how this will be arranged. If you are confused on this issue please call us.