Pic-line worries

Hello all you brave and lovely ladies.

My veins are totally shot and have been told I must have Picc-line.

I'm really worried about this, probably irrationally. Not able to get it out of my mind and is affecting my sleep. It is due to done next Monday having been postponed 2 weeks ago partly due to being ill with coughing all the time & possible panic attack.

Any advice would be most welcome.

Good wishes to all

Gill xx

8 Replies

  • Hi Gill,

    Sorry to hear of the anxiety associated with a PICC line being put in. What's the thing you are most worried about?

    I had a PICC line put in quite early on during chemo, as I was on weekly. I had it for 6 months altogether and it saved me at least 20 cannulas and 30-40 injections/needles which was brilliant - they can use it for taking bloods as well as for other injections.

    The process for putting it in was straightforward - a trained nurse gave a local anaesthetic and guided the thin tube into my arm during ultrasound. They then did an xray to confirm it was in the right spot. The procedure was short and maybe a bit uncomfortable and odd but that was that. I kept my eyes closed as I was a bit squeamish! The dressing needs to be changed weekly by a trained nurse. I got a kind of plastic protector (on prescription) which you use in the shower so it doesn't get wet. It's covered with a little bandage a bit like those sports bandages you see on knees and elbows, which kept it from being knocked about.

    It really didn't get in the way of anything, you can't feel it, and it was really, really good to have no cannulas or needles during the entire six months.

    I hope this gives you an example of how it can be an ok thing to do. Maybe you could chat with your CNS to voice your fears and get more info, if that is what is missing?

    I hope it all goes really well in any event.



  • I have had the same problem. Veins so bad I developed phlebitis in both arms.

    I have had a port fitted. Best thing ever and wish I'd done it before my veins got so bad. I believe a pic line is easier to fit than a port so try not to worry. Maybe speak to someone who has a pic line, I'm sure they will re assure you. Good luck! X

  • Hi Gill

    I totally agree with everything Judith has just said. Like you I worried and fretted... fear of the unknown to be honest but it really was nothing to stress over. I put it off when I was offered it a couple of times and continued with the cannulas. How daft I was now looking back. If I need to have one again I would not hesitate..... and I consider myself a wimp! Hope it goes well. Kathy xx

  • As the others have said, my husband had a pic line, brilliant.

  • I had one too for a while and it wasn't too bad having it put in. My partner was allowed to stay with me and she talked to another nurse about horses which distracted me. It didn't hurt much. Just felt a bit weird.

  • Hi i had a picc line inserted. A very competent nurse did it. Into my upper arm. Gave local anaesthetic

    . .used ultasound machine to see all veins.. was brilliant afterwards. Needed washing through regularly. Wore a plastic cover on my arm in bath. Got cover from boots. Highly recommended

  • Hi Gill,

    Only just got by with my veins.Going back, if Id hav known of all the faff and uncertainty and pain, I would have gone with the pic line as you know what to expect and it's easy after the initial insertion.My advice is make what is easiest for you in the long term

    Best wishes, Carole xxx

  • My veins were also shot but pic line was brilliant for me. I was worried but had a numbing type thing first felt uncomfortable and a bit wierd but was not as bad as I had thought. I had no problems with it throughout the rest of my treatment. So would have it again if I needed. Lol Dee

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