• Ports and lifting: what are the limits?

    Asked by thoraxe23 on Monday, March 31, 2014

    Ports and lifting: what are the limits?

    I have had a port on my right pec for about a year now. I also play football for my university and this semester I am finally working on coming back on the team. However, no one I have talked to (i.e., doctors and trainers) definitively know what are my limits to weightlifting. All I vaguely know is that they want me to not do over the head or bench press-like exercises as that may be problematic or otherwise dislodge the port. Does anyone have any information, one way or another, what the truth is? Thanks!

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • GregP_WN's Avatar
      GregP_WN

      I had my port for 15 years, they told me to be careful with it, eg: don't run into anything with it, but they never told me don't do this or that. I have worked outside in the landscape business since I was diagnosed 27 years ago and done LOTS of hard work, lifting, digging, etc. Never had a problem. I would say the biggest danger would be taking a direct hit on it. Still, talk to them and I would also say use common sense and build yourself up to a certain level, don't try to jerk 400# the first day. I wish you much luck! Hope you get back on and do great!

      almost 6 years ago
    • lilymadeline's Avatar
      lilymadeline

      Congratulations on going back to your team!
      But please DO NOT DO ANY LIFTING WITHOUT CONSULTING YOUR SURGEON WHO INSTALLED YOUR PORT!!!!! I kind of can't believe that your oncologist didn't have an answer for you so I would ask the surgeon and try to make an appointment to see him in person as well so you can show him what you are doing and go over your moves. I had a port in my arm and everybody was very clear that I was never to lift more than 10 pounds at any time for any reason and no pushups. And I used to do 100 a day before I had my port put in. :-( And I was a dancer with bone cancer so I actually danced in front of my orthopedic oncologist to find out what moves I could still do and what moves were unsafe for my bones. A picture really is worth 1,000 words so I really strongly suggest seeing your surgeon for advise on this. I have had my port out now so I am back to doing some weight lifting myself, it is a wonderful thing to do! Good luck!!!!!

      almost 6 years ago
    • leepenn's Avatar
      leepenn

      depends on port type and placement location... so consulting with your surgeon is a definite must!

      and.... i'm wondering - do you still NEED it?

      i had mine out as soon as possible!!!!! and i don't miss it - not one bit. is it possible for you to lose the port?

      i'm also an athlete - only at the very beginning was i instructed to hold back. i had a chest port, though, which is very different than the one you can get in your arm... or your belly... i race bikes, so i pull a lot on the bars when sprinting or climbing... and my heart rate is routinely near my max... etc... no restrictions at all, according to the surgeon who placed the port... i was only instructed to take it easy for the first few days after placement. still rode my bike... just not hard. i did some yoga with it... and pushups...

      what hurt the most? head slams - my child and i would rough house, and once his forehead slammed right into the port... and that HURT!

      i generally found the port annoying... but it was a net win when it came to receiving chemo, that is for sure.

      good luck and CONGRATS on getting back into football! that is exciting! i hope you have a great season.

      almost 6 years ago
    • glam's Avatar
      glam

      My onco and surgeon told me not to go so far in terms of weighting lift.....all the other activities would be ok....no one told exactly how much weight would be ok as they said it would vary from one person to other....the important was for me to listen to my body.....and start slowly with the activities and increase them with time and if it hurt in the area of the port so to step back till it stops hurting......I understood their recommendation as do it slowly and carefully but do it and increase with time.......my body would tell me the limits......today I go to Madonna's gym Hard Candy and do most of the exercises with no problem at all.....but of course I go much harder on legs and belly than on arms and chest were my port is......wishing you all the best....talk with your doctors....show your workout routine and listen to their opinion....God bless you and continue blessing all of us

      almost 6 years ago
    • thoraxe23's Avatar
      thoraxe23

      Wow, thanks guys! I will definitely take all of your comments into consideration and appreciate them. The only thing is that I am away at school now, and I honestly do not remember who my surgeon was. =/ so could I ask any surgeon who does this kind of procedure?

      And I want to get this thing out as soon as I can, and my doctors know this but they highly recommended my keeping it in for the time being. I know I want it out by the summer so I can really train and get as close, if not at 100% for next season (because I am a running back and will most definitely get hit a lot). Also, how long does it take for one to get back to around one's pre-diagnosis level athletically? I assume it depends on the person and treatments, etc. but just to get an idea to sate my curiosity.

      Thanks for all the support!

      almost 6 years ago
    • lilymadeline's Avatar
      lilymadeline

      If you can't remember ( I don't know the name of mine either ) just call the hospital where it was done or your oncologist because they will have a record of the surgeon who installed your port. If you are out of town at least you could call and talk to him about this. I would go to the person who worked on you rather than someone else, for one thing they owe you the time because it was their surgery and are more likely to help you and they will have all the notes from the procedure and will be more familiar with your body.
      You do need to be gentle with your body where the port is, so yes you would need to have it out to go back to heavy weight lifting, etc.

      almost 6 years ago
    • lilymadeline's Avatar
      lilymadeline

      Sorry I wasn't finished! But please, please talk to the surgeon about the weights and playing football especially because you are a running back. And I hope that you can get it out quickly, maybe bug your oncologist some more! ;-) You probably will never need it again, and if you do they can always put it back in. And it can take a year or two to get back to normal after cancer treatments, but you are young and strong and you will probably be back to your old self or even better faster than you think! Good luck and have fun!

      almost 6 years ago
    • thoraxe23's Avatar
      thoraxe23

      I might just do that! That makes sense.

      Some bugging is in my oncologist's near future.

      almost 6 years ago

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