How would I know if there was an issue with my port?

During cancer treatment or other health issues, your healthcare team may need frequent access to your veins to give you treatment. To avoid placement of a new IV line for each treatment, or repeated needle sticks to draw blood, your physician may recommend a port (such as a port-a-cath) or other long term IV access.

There are a few potential side effects and risks that should be discussed with your doctor. The risks may include infections, blockages or clots, and other problems that are less common, such as kinks under the skin or a shift in the position of the port.

If you experience any of the following issues, you should contact your physician immediately.

  • You develop a fever
  • Fluid is leaking from the port or area surrounding the port
  • There is bleeding from the area of insertion
  • The surrounding skin becomes swollen, red or warm to the touch
  • It becomes difficult to get liquid into the port
  • You develop uncharacteristic shortness of breath or dizziness
  • The tube outside your body is longer that it was previously

The VCU Baird Vascular Institute provides convenient services if issues arise with your port. We understand how important it is to be close to home when you have health concerns. Our expert physicians specialize in placing port-a-caths, and other IV catheters and are also exceptional at diagnosing and remedying issues with previously placed ports.

Source: http://www.cancer.net

Flying and Your Risk of a Blood Clot

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We found this article online and wanted to share it with our readers.

“This article is well written and provides good advice for those folks who are at risk of deep venous thrombosis and are taking long airplane flights.   It is also important not to fly or take long trips in a car for at least several weeks after significant treatments for varicose veins.”

Malcolm K. Sydnor M.D.
Medical Director, Vascular & Interventional Radiology
VCU Baird Vascular Institute

5 Reasons You Should Choose VCU Baird Institute

Baird Institute

1. We offer the very best expertise and knowledge of a prominent academic medical center, with a neighborhood feel. 

Backed by the expertise of VCU Medical Center, as well as access to their full array of services, the VCU Baird Vascular Institute is the only academically based vascular center in Central Virginia.

The VCU Baird Vascular Institute relies on a unique team of interventional radiologists and vascular surgeons with state-of-the-art technology, to maintain our high standards of excellent care. We offer our patients a full suite of both traditional exams and new, cutting-edge procedures, to diagnose their problems quickly and efficiently, and to provide therapeutic interventions, if needed. Our patients receive the highest level of treatment from our experienced team of advanced radiologists and vascular surgeons.

2. We have the latest in technology and techniques to diagnose and treat vascular disease.

Vascular ultrasound is a noninvasive ultrasound method used in vascular screening to evaluate your blood circulation. A vascular ultrasound may also be called a duplex study since it combines traditional ultrasound and Doppler ultrasound. The screening exam does not require the use of needles, dyes, radiation or anesthesia. Ultrasound imaging uses a small transducer or probe, and ultrasound gel placed directly on the skin.

Using image-guided techniques, our interventional radiologists and vascular surgeons are able to diagnose and treat almost any vascular condition not related to the heart or brain.

3. We are easy to get to, with convenient parking

You no longer need to travel all the way downtown to take advantage of VCU’s world-class medical services. Easy to reach from almost any area of town, we are located just off Interstate 195 in the near West End at 205 N. Hamilton Street. BVI brings the expertise of VCU Medical Center to a convenient neighborhood setting.

4. We offer a variety of services under one roof.

Our patients have easy access to the full array of expert vascular screening and treatment services offered by the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center.

Services include: vein care, port placement, dialysis access management, IVC/SVC filter placements, vascular ultrasound and peripheral vascular physiologic tests (PVRs, ABIs), vascular screenings, diagnosis and treatment, and diagnosis and treatment for narrowing of arteries in the legs, arms and other areas of the body.

5. We work hand in hand with your referring physician.

We stay in constant contact with our patient referring physicians to help ensure appropriate care. We have a team comprised of physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, technologists and administrative staff that are dedicated to the health of our patients and being responsive to our referring physicians. Our onsite manager is responsible to keep things running smoothly, and serves as a point of contact for any questions or issues that may arise.

What exactly is Vascular Care?

Did you know there are more than 60,000 miles of blood vessels in the human body? Vascular care simply refers to the diagnosis and treatment of the body’s huge network of blood vessels.

Vascular disease describes a number of conditions of the circulatory system. Vascular diseases range from diseases of the arteries, veins and lymph vessels, to blood disorders that affect circulation. When disease occurs in the arteries, less blood is delivered to the tissues, reducing the oxygen and nutrients needed by the tissues of the body.

Other reasons to seek experts in vascular care include placement of port-a-caths, and other IV catheters for chemotherapy and other long-term IV access, dialysis access, IVC filters, DVT treatment, and peripheral vascular ultrasound examinations, among others.

At the VCU Baird Vascular Institute, we have the latest in technology and techniques to diagnose and treat a variety of vascular issues. Our interventional radiologists and vascular surgeons offer a multidisciplinary approach to so that each patient receives a comprehensive vascular screening and a treatment tailored to his or her particular need. The institute affords patients easy access to the full array of expert vascular screening and treatment services offered by the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center.

The physicians and staff at the VCU Baird Vascular Institute are proud to be a part of the rich community of medical professionals in the Central Virginia area. We know that choosing a physician to help in the care of your patient is a responsibility that is not taken lightly. If you are interested in a consultation for any of the services we provide, please contact the VCU Baird Vascular Institute at (804) 828-2600 or email us at bairdvascularinstitute@mcvh-vcu.edu.