I don’t have as much hardware on my chest as General Patreas, but mine doesn’t come off with my jacket. This getup may look awful but it’s a godsend compared to all the needle pokes, blood draws, infusions and IVs it replaces.
This contrivance is called a Hickman Line, or central venous catheter (CVC).
This type of catheter is surgically inserted into a vein in the neck or chest and passed under the skin. Only the end of the catheter is brought through the skin through which medicines can be given. Passing the catheter under the skin helps keep it in place better, lets the patient move around easier, and makes it less visible. (Less visible! I have multicolored tentacles dangling from my chest!)
A CVC can remain in place for extended periods and is used when long-term intravenous access is needed, as with chemo. This model is called a triluminal catheter because it has three tails.
I also have a antiemetic patch on my upper arm that’s the new gold standard in nausea control. It contains granisetron, a recently approved anti-nausea drug. This is just the baseline; I’ll get other medications as needed in the hospital.
All this gives the impression that I’m headed for some kick-ass chemo, but then, killing cancer at its genetic roots is serious business. The goal is to put me in remission so that clean stem cells can be harvested for my upcoming transplant.
Take No Prisoners!