Port-a-cath care

  1. Hey Everyone-
    I have never posted but I've started reading this site for about 2 weeks and love it. I am a nursing student with 1 year left for my BSN.

    I have a chest port-a-cath cause I get twice weekly magnesium sulfate infusions and was wondering about the correct care concerning the port. Some nursed do it one way and others do it a different way. First of all, when accessing the port is it always necessary to flush the port out with NS before hooking it up to the pump? And another thing, do you think the nurses should put gloves and a mask on when they access my port? None of them do. And one more question, when I get IV benedryl and phenergan during my infusion should it be diluted and can they mix the meds with the mag sulfate or do they need to flush out the line with saline while administering them.

    I just thought I would ask. Its not a big deal but since my port is accessed so many times maybe it is a big deal. Thanks a lot. Curleysue.
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    About curleysue

    Joined: Nov '04; Posts: 102; Likes: 16
    Home Care Aide


  3. by   luvrn
    Our policy is to use a sterile dressing kit for central lines. Our kits include mask, sterile gloves, betadine and ETOH. We don sterile gloves and clean site with ETOH then betadine maintaining sterile technique. Flush with 5-10cc saline. BTW the needle is primed prior to sticking. At another hospital they clean with ETOH and then stick. No mask No sterile gloves.

    Our policy for flushing is 10cc NS 5cc 100unit heparin unless Groshong then its 10cc NS. Labs we flush with 20cc NS then 500units heparin
  4. by   nursemary9
    Hi Curleysue,

    I have been working with ports since they came out. Our procedure is as the writer above stated--we use the central line kit & keep aeseptic technique.

    As far as diluting, some nurses do and some don't. I tend to dilute. Also, I never really mix meds together, unless the pharmacy does it. I always flush with saline between meds just in case there may be a compatability problem.

    Hope this helps.

    Mary Ann
  5. by   plumrn
    At our local Oncology clinic, the chemo nurses never put on masks to access the ports. The pts are lined up in recliners next to each other and the nurse brings a tray on a stand with the kit, and use sterile technique, but no mask.