Central venous port system-related complications in outpatient chemotherapy for colorectal cancer

Hepatogastroenterology. 2012 Jun;59(116):1079-80. doi: 10.5754/hge09283.


Background/aims: The current standard chemotherapy for metastatic colorectal cancer is the FOLFOX or the FOLFIRI regimen. Although these regimens include the continuous infusion of an anticancer agent, chemotherapy is possible by using implantable central venous port systems with a portable disposable pump in an outpatient setting. This study is an evaluation of the usefulness of implantable central venous port systems for colorectal cancer chemotherapy.

Methodology: An implantable central venous port system was placed in 93 consecutive patients with metastatic colorectal cancer. All patients received modified FOLFOX6 ± bevacizumab or FOLFIRI ± bevacizumab regimens via the port system. Follow-up continued for each patient until removal of the port system, death or unavailability of further information. The incidence and details of the complications were investigated retrospectively.

Results: Out of 1,246 treatments, a total of 16 incidents of port system-related complications were identified (1.28%). Incidents involved infections (n=12), catheter pinch off (n=2), fibrin sheath (n=1) and drug leakage (n=1). A port system removal was required in 14 cases.

Conclusions: Implantable central venous port systems are safe and have a low long-term complication rate. We consider port systems, such as modified FOLFOX6 ± bevacizumab or FOLFIRI ± bevacizumab regimens, useful for colorectal cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / administration & dosage
  • Bevacizumab
  • Camptothecin / administration & dosage
  • Camptothecin / analogs & derivatives
  • Catheterization, Central Venous / adverse effects*
  • Catheters, Indwelling / adverse effects*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Female
  • Fluorouracil / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Leucovorin / administration & dosage
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organoplatinum Compounds / administration & dosage
  • Outpatients


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Organoplatinum Compounds
  • Bevacizumab
  • Leucovorin
  • Fluorouracil
  • Camptothecin

Supplementary concepts

  • Folfox protocol
  • IFL protocol