Home Infusion Therapy

Infusion therapy is a safe way to take medicines or fluids that can’t be taken by mouth. Instead, they flow through a flexible tube (catheter) that’s placed in a vein—usually on your arm or chest. This is called the infusion site.

Woman sitting at home reading, with chemo infusion port in chest.

Advantages of home therapy

Home infusion therapy allows you to live a more normal life. Home therapy also costs less than treatment in a hospital. With proper care, the risk of infection can be low.

Your role

With home therapy, you take an active role in your treatment. A home healthcare company brings your supplies, and a nurse shows you what to do. You need to know the following:

  • Who to call in an emergency

  • What supplies you need

  • How to prevent infection

  • How to handle and store your supplies safely

  • Where to get support

When to call the nurse

Call the nurse if you notice any of the following problems:

  • There is redness, swelling, drainage, or pain around the infusion site.

  • Your temperature is higher than normal or you have chills.

  • You have swelling in your chest, arm, or neck. Fluid may be leaking into the tissue.

  • The catheter or tubing comes out.

Turn off the system and call the nurse if:

  • The pole falls over and something breaks, or you have a problem putting the pole upright and restarting the system.

  • The solution isn’t running smoothly through the tubing.

  • There is a tear or leak in the tubing or the catheter.

  • The alarm on the pump comes on.

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