PICC Lines For POTS


hey guys this is haley and in today’s
video I’m gonna be talking all about my picc if you aren’t already I would follow
my Instagram account haleyslifethroughalens as I update a lot more
frequently on my Instagram and I’ve talked a lot about my picc there so go
ahead and follow me my handle will be in the description so starting off the
first question you guys probably have is what is a picc if you guys aren’t
familiar with central lines you probably haven’t really heard of a picc as they’re
not super common so picc stands for peripherally inserted
central catheter it is a long thin tube that is inserted into a vein in your arm
and then it is passed through the larger veins near your heart it’s a type of
central line used for patients who require frequent IV use it helps avoid
frequent sticks or developing a ton of scar tissue or it’s for patients who
already have a ton of scar tissue and they need a picc so that they’re able to
still infuse or give treatment or whatever so the next question you guys
are probably wondering is why did I get a picc so I got a picc for my condition
known as POTS postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome if you guys are
interested in learning more about POTS link in the iCard I did a whole video
about what POTS is so about a month or two ago my doctors and I decided that I
would most likely probably need a central line due to needing frequent IVs
to manage my pots symptoms if you guys want a whole video on like how IV fluids
helps pots I could go ahead and do that but I also made a post over on my
Instagram probably several posts talking about how saline infusions have helped
my pots but if you guys want a whole video on that I will go ahead and do
that so my doctors and I about one or two months ago it decided that I would
most likely need a central line in the future because of how often I was
needing IV fluids to manage my pots symptoms we didn’t really expect that I
would need a central line so soon but for various reasons it just kind of
happened earlier than we anticipated just for various
reasons that I will touch on in just a little bit so I know I haven’t talked a
lot about IV fluids here on my youtube channel but I’ve actually been receiving
IV fluids twice a week since around November so I have been receiving IV
fluids for several months now and they have literally changed my life so I’ve
been able to just do housework again I’ve been able to work like for my
YouTube channel I’ve been able to do so much more things that I just wasn’t able
to do before because of my POTS either because I was blacking out too much or
my fatigue was way too high it honestly the amount of relief I’ve gotten from IV
fluids is incredible so the next question might be why did we decide to
get a central line so soon so there were two main reasons that kind of made the
choice of getting a central line kind of comes sooner than we expected the first
thing was kind of financially so our insurance kind of is a little bit
different than it used to be it changed last year to going to co-pays so
basically we don’t have to pay a percentage we just pay co-pays but it’s
kind of frustrating because anytime you’re like going to the hospital versus
like a doctor visit it’s an automatic two hundred and fifty dollar copay so
because my IV infusions were at the hospital every time I went to get an
infusion it was two hundred and fifty dollars so because I was going twice a
week that was about five hundred dollars a week and that is a lot of money for
just one liter of saline and it’s quite ridiculous in my opinion I don’t know
why it was so high but that’s just kind of how our insurance was and there was
nothing really we could do about it until we hit our deductible after a
couple weeks we definitely hit our deductible but our insurance is about to
reset again it resets in April I believe March or April so we would have to go
through that whole process of like spending all of that money again just to
get IV infusions and that was just a lot of money for a treatment personally like
that’s a thousand dollars every two weeks that’s a lot of money and just to
put it into perspective a bag of saline is like ten to 20 bucks like it’s not
that expensive so we were just paying a ridiculous amount because technically I
was being seen at the hospital so it was just kind of frustrating so that was the
main reason we figured out that if we went to home health it was only a fifty
dollar copay and I believe that’s only fifty dollars when a nurse comes to my
home and don’t believe it’s fifty dollars every treatment but I have to
look into that still so either way it is wait like two hundred dollars cheaper to
do it from home than it is to go to the hospital so that was one of the main
reasons was financially we just weren’t able to keep going to the hospital for
IV infusions the second reason is the closest hospital I was comfortable going
to was about 40 minutes away we don’t have a major hospital in my town
basically that meant I was driving 40 minutes there and then
the infusion lasted about two and a half to three hours and then I had to drive
40 minutes home so that was like a 5 to 6 hour thing that I was doing in one day
and that’s a lot for me to do it’s a lot for me to be gone outside of the house I
get very tired I don’t do well with driving long distances it was just
literally I was so exhausted by the time I got home and I just felt like after
spending that much energy out at the hospital for like 6 hours that by the
time I got home I was so exhausted and I felt like I would get more benefit out
of IV fluids if I was at home and able to do it you know when I wasn’t like out
of the house all the time so that those were kind of like the two main reasons
and I brought those up to my doctor and we discussed them and that’s why we
decided to get a central line so soon a lot of people are wondering what the
difference between an IV and a PICC line is
and IV is basically just a needle that goes into the vein in your arm and it
can stay there up to three to four days at max before it needs to come out due
to like there’s a lot of risks for keeping IVs in that long so they’re not
a long-term thing as the insertion is not very big like it’s just a small tube
going into your vein they don’t last long three to four days at max but a
PICC line because it’s a long tube that is inserted into the vein all the way up
into a larger vein near your heart it is able to stay in your body for up to six
to 12 months it just depends on the person and how long you need treatment
but it’s a much longer-term thing than like an IV would so that’s basically the
difference between piccs and IVs oh also a picc is considered a central line
because it’s near your heart and there’s a lot more risks associated with central
lines versus IVs so there’s a lot more risk of sepsis and
blood clots with piccs than there is with like a peripheral IV the next question
everyone’s asking me is how long will I have my picc for so I do not know for
sure but when I went into the hospital to get my pic placed the order said that
I would have a PICC for six weeks and then it would be switched out for a port
now my doctor never officially told me that it was just in my order so I don’t
know for sure if it will be six weeks longer or shorter I just kind of have to
communicate with my doctor and figure it all out but my guess is around one to
two months the next question I’m getting a ton is why did we decide to get a pic
versus a port I am not 100% sure exactly why my doctors chose a picc versus a port
but these are kind of like my ideas on why they did it so I think the main
reasons they did it is picc is a really really easy procedure
something that can be done like real fast and because I was wanting to do
home health right away they thought a PICC line would just be easy to do so
that I’m able to start home health a PICC line is also not as major of a
commitment it literally can just be pulled out in an office it’s just a tube
going up through your vein so all I do is pull it out and you don’t have a
central line anymore whereas a port is like a surgically implanted device in
your chest and it lasts like I think I’ve heard like three to five years it’s
a long-term commitment so my doctors didn’t want to jump to a
port if after I started home health I realized this wasn’t necessarily a
treatment I want it to continue that’s my guess however I do I believe that I
probably will be doing home IVs for a long-term treatment so most likely we
will end up switching to a port but they just wanted to be really cautious
because they don’t want to place a device in me if it’s something that like
two weeks from now I’m like oh never mind I don’t want to do this anymore or
like we started IVs and we realized it’s not giving me enough relief or whatever
so I think it’s just kind of a cautious step that they were taking and the other
reason that I don’t think they jump to a port is that my dysautonomia clinic that
I go to is fairly new I believe it’s like three years old maybe
so they’ve only been treating pots patients like relatively newly and
they’ve never placed ports in a pots patient before that I know of so they’re
still researching it they’re still figuring out like the logistics on how
it works like with insurance and all of that so I think because I wanted to
start this so soon they weren’t ready to prescribe a port but I think within a
month or two they will be ready so I don’t know I think that’s the main thing
honestly like I’m just doing what my doctors are recommending to me
that’s why I got a picc does getting a PICC line hurt so I’ve been asked this
quite a few times and honestly it doesn’t really hurt like it’s not
something that you’re literally like crying or like screaming and pain like
it’s not even on that level it’s not even that painful at all the only thing
that’s kind of painful is they insert I think it’s like a needle I don’t know I
couldn’t see because it’s a sterile procedure they had me draped and so
there was like a blue like thing over my head kind of so like I couldn’t see what
they were doing but I believe they inserted like a normal IV and they put
lidocaine through my veins so that it would numb the vein so that I wouldn’t
feel the tube going through so that part like it wasn’t like painful necessarily
but it like burned I believe it’s the same stuff they use for like cavities in
your mouth so it’s kind of like the same thing so that part was like a little
uncomfortable and then after it was numb they waited until it was numb then they
started putting the tube in the issue with me is that they were having trouble
pushing it in I don’t know exactly why they said my skin was like I don’t know
they I think it’s because I’m like skinnier or something I don’t really
know but they were having issues like pushing it in and even though you’re
numb so it doesn’t hurt I could still feel the tube going up into me and I was
very anxious I have anxiety disorders I have panic disorder so I started to get
really anxious when I felt the feeling of the tube going through me and I
started to pass out so the nurse had to run and like give me ice chips to like
help me not pass out but other than that like it didn’t hurt it just really
freaked me out and if I was to do it again I would ask for you know like a
xanax or an ativan or something just to calm me down
and honestly I don’t think normal people would need it it’s just I do have a
history with high anxiety and high potential of having panic attacks so I
was just like I was so nervous that I it just started to pass out but other
than that it was fine it wasn’t really that painful after it was done I was
sore I would say for like about a day maybe a day and a half or something but
other than that I wasn’t really that sore I am very bruised around where they
inserted the tube I could show you guys that later I’ll put a disclaimer first
but I am very bruised around where they inserted the pic so if I touch it or if
I bump it it is sore but it’s just like any other bruise it’s not like super
painful so honestly it’s not really that painful
it just scared me a lot so yeah some people were wondering on how having a
picc is gonna change like my everyday life like what are some things I can’t
do because I have a picc there’s literally two things that come to the
top of my head the first thing is I can’t lift which this is a thing that is
really bothering me and why I really want to get a port sooner rather than
later is I can’t lift anything over ten pounds
otherwise you risk getting a blood clot in your line which can be dangerous and
also like you’d have to go like the emergency room and try to get it removed
or they’d have to pull your pic out so because of that I’m not allowed to like
lift my rabbits hay my rabbit hay boxes my rabbits litter boxes if anything is
over ten pounds I shouldn’t be lifting it so that’s like the major thing also I
cannot lift my wheelchair out of the car because my wheelchair is heavier than
ten pounds so yeah I’ve heard some people say once the PICC line heals
after about two weeks they break the rule and they do lift things however I
just don’t want to risk it I do not live close to a hospital I am NOT gonna be
like risking anything if I can help it so yeah that’s one of the main things so
I can’t go grocery shopping unless someone is with me because I need wheelchair
chair when I grocery shop I’m just not able to walk that far yet but so that’s
honestly the biggest thing that is annoying is I can’t use my wheelchair so
the second thing that I can’t really do with a PICC line is you can’t go
swimming or submerge your arm underwater so I don’t really like to swim so that’s
not a huge deal also middle of winter not really gonna be swimming you could
probably take a bath if you covered it and kept your arm out of the water you
were really careful but you can shower if you cover it I covered it twice with
like two different things just because I was like super cautious and you can’t
shower more than 20 minutes otherwise there is the potential of your your
bandage or whatever like steaming up on the inside
I don’t know how common that is but I have heard if you’re like in the shower
more than 20 minutes it could do that so yeah other than that there really isn’t anything
that changes my everyday life another question was what maintenance is
required with a PICC there isn’t a whole ton that I necessarily have to do once a
week a home health nurse comes and changes my dressing and that is a very
sterile procedure so because it’s a central line and it goes directly to
your heart everything is very sterile so that’s something I have to do once a
week other than that I do have to flush my line and with saline and then flush
it with heparin once a day so now I thought I’d go ahead and show you my picc
if anyone doesn’t want to see this you can stop watching but yeah you don’t see
any needles or anything like that this doesn’t even have any needles it’s just
a tube but anyway I just thought that I wouldn’t warn you so I do want to
mention I have this PICC cover right now it’s from the brand mighty well I’m
actually an ambassador for them over on Instagram and so when I got my PICC line
I knew I really wanted one of their PICC line covers they are literally the best
PICC line cover I’ve ever seen so you want to always keep your picc line
covered just so that you like tubing connected to it and if
it’s not covered there’s a risk of it getting caught on something or pulling
out and your PICC line can easily be pulled out so you have to be careful and
you also want to like keep it clean and stuff but the mighty well picc covers
they just come down like this so they actually fold over itself so right here
is all my tubing you guys can see that so I just undo my tubing I basically
just wrap it around my arm so there we go and then this is where it’s inserted
into my arm but now I’m going to take the pic cover off and it has these
little holes for the tubing to come out of which is super cool so you just kind
of have to be careful when you’re taking the line out that you’re not pulling and then the cover just comes off like
this this is a look at the picc line uh I don’t know how well you guys
can see it from this angle but basically there is this dressing over the top I’m
using Sorba view but I think I’m allergic to it because I’m allergic to
all adhesives and then I have a bio patch which is basically like
antibiotics in this little foamy sticker it just helps with like decrease
infection and then the PICC line itself is this purple thing and it’s connected
to the purple tube that like well actually I don’t know if the whole tube
is purple but on the outside it’s purple and then it goes up and then this is the
end of the PICC line and then this tubing right here is extension tubing
and this is where I basically flush the line hook up to IV fluids all of that
but yeah that’s basically it I can go into more detail if you guys are curious
but again I’m very very new to PICC line so I don’t know everything I literally
got my pick line like on Wednesday last week which was not even a week ago so
yeah I just thought I’d show you that so now I’m gonna go ahead and put my pick
line cover back on anyways yeah thats the PICC line cover so there’s a
lot of different covers out there this is just the one I really like I will
leave the code on the screen for you guys to get 10% off your order if you
guys are looking for a PICC line cover and then I’ll also leave it down in the
description and a link to the company if you guys are curious so they’re not
sponsoring me or anything they literally I just really love their
product so that’s basically it for this video on all about PICC lines with pots
although I didn’t really talked a lot about POTS in this video but if you guys have
any further questions please leave them in the comment section down below I’ll
do my best to answer them if I can I’m also hoping to do a couple more videos
with my PICC line hopefully soon just because I don’t know how long I’m
gonna be having the picc line but I thought a couple of videos you guys
might be interested it’s like a day in the life with a PICC line how I do my
saline infusions with a PICC line and like all of my supplies PICC line video
so like all the supplies that I have for my PICC line so let me know if you guys
would be interested in any of those videos or if you guys have any
additional videos that you think would be cool to see it leave them down in the
comments below so that’s basically it for today’s video I hope you guys
enjoyed don’t forget to comment like and subscribe if you want to see more videos
about POTS or PICC lines or anything like that also
don’t forget to follow me on my Instagram at haleyslifethroughalens
as I post a lot more on Instagram that I do my YouTube channel and you can keep
more up to date on what’s going on with me or whatever so go ahead and follow me
there so I’ll see you guys very soon on a new video bye can you not do that at the background
Because of

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