The good news:
Steve's chest port was successfully removed in his room.
The less-than-good news:
He'll be at St. Paul until Wednesday. (At least it's Christmas Eve and not Christmas Day!)
The same doctor who placed the port in his chest two weeks ago arrived in his room to remove it. I tried to stay in the room for moral support, but as soon as I saw the needles come out, I had to leave. (I am not good with needles or stitches or blood.) Betty was here, though, and held his hand during the entire procedure. He didn't feel a thing after the Lidocaine shot, which numbed the site.
Just before the removal, Dr. M called the room to visit with me.
She is reluctant to have a new line of any kind placed right now, for fear that the bacteria would just latch on and start reproducing again.
Instead, he'll receive the antibiotic through regular IVs the rest of today and all day tomorrow. (This is no easy task for Steve, whose veins were already bad pre-cancer but are just ravaged after a year of chemotherapy, steroids and other chemicals. As I'm typing, his nurse is trying her best for a good stick. It's not happening so far. The charge nurse is going to be called in next.)
By Wednesday morning, he should be OK to receive a PICC line. And then he'll be able to go home and continue receiving the bacteria-fighting drugs with the help of home health care.
Steve is handling the news well, though he would much rather be packing for home right now than settling in for two more nights.