Life with bowel cancer


swimming with a portacath ?

When first diagnosed 2012 had a PICC Line and Folfox, so no swimming for a year.
Need to have chemo for metastatic bowel cancer in right lung and liver; this time round Folfiri.
Have elected to have a portacath inserted.
Does anyone have experience of being on Folfiri with a portacath ? Is it possible to swim with a portacath ?
With thanks and all good wishes,


Hi @determinedjoan,
I have a portacath. I recently finished my treatment but had a couple of rounds of Folfiri and quite a lot of Folfox. The portacath is really good-bit of a faff when they put it in but after that you can shower etc. with no problem. I still have mine in and have been swimming in the sea in Crete and Nice :):)
All the best


Dear Mountainwoman, that is soooo helpful & encouraging; thank you v much for responding so quickly- greatly appreciated.


@determinedjoan my hubby had a port for 9months, he had folfox and never had any problems with his. They also used it during both his operations and again worked perfectly. He has been swimming with our little boys through out this period. The only thing we were advised is not to swim the day it was used to prevent infections. :x::x:


Brill ! Thank u sooo much & v well done to ur husband !
Wishing u all well


My hubby too ! He swims a few times a week , he’s had it in 22 months ... go get your cossie on ! :x::x::x:


Hi again @determinedjoan

Definitely swimming is ok with a portacath. I swam in the pool on our cruise ship often with no problems. I recently asked my oncologist about regular swimming at a public pool during active chemo and he told me he would actively encourage it along with any exercise as the benefits outweigh the potential risks. I'm on fortnightly Folfiri and Cetuximab 😉

Sending very best wishes,



Thank u so much for ur encouraging replies; portacath fitted yesterday, first chemo (Folfiri) next Tuesday; thinking about going for a nice swim later on will defo help to get me through it ! :x:


Hi @determinedjoan ... welcome to the portacath club. Had mine fitted Monday. Was advised not to swim for 10 to 14 days to allow wound to heal. Xx after that no problem... :x::x:


Oh thank u so much for this really helpful info Bridget; do hope all went smoothly for u on Monday & u r recovering & healing well. When do u start ur treatment? All the v best of luck with it :x:


hi @determinedjoan. Wound healing beautifully. No dressing now and had chemo through it no problem yesterday. Still keeping it dry but will start to shower after Monday 7 days post insertion st advice of chemo nurse. Then I might book myself a spa day! Xx hope all went ok with yours


Great news ! V well done 👍 u Bridget ! Keep up the good work & enjoy your well-deserved spa day :x:


im having mine fitted on tuesday, with first chemo session on thursday, spa day sounds good soon :x:


Hi @determinedjoan I’ve had my port in for 3 years, initially for Folfox. Haven’t had any chemo since the initial cycles but a small liver met, removed by ablation has put me in the high risk of recurrence cateagory so my oncologist advice was to leave it in for now. Two years later it’s still there lol. I’ve had no problems with it at all, and as it’s under the skin there is less chance of any infections. Swimming is not a problem. Very best of luck with your treatment. Diane :x::x::x::x:


@determinedjoan, hi, I have had my portacath for 2 years, no problems at all, brilliant for bathing and swimming.:x:


Fantastic! Thank u sooo much :x:


determinedjoan 6:23 pm
Went 4 my first swim 🏊‍♂️ since having portacath put in 2 weeks ago & 1st dose Folfiri - bliss ! Thanks 🙏 sooo much to everyone who responded with advice & encouragement greatly appreciated. Will be interesting to get blood test results (can’t have Filgrastim injections cos of previous, v severe allergic reaction / Sweet’s Syndrome). If neuts ok, 2nd dose Tuesday - bring it on !


Great news @determinedjoan. off swimming tomorrow for the 1st time since new portacath. good luck tomorrow


Thank u - enjoy ! :x: