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Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2009 Sep;30(9):823-9. doi: 10.1086/605320.

Closed-hub systems with protected connections and the reduction of risk of catheter-related bloodstream infection in pediatric patients receiving intravenous prostanoid therapy for pulmonary hypertension.

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  • 1University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine, The Children's Hospital, Aurora, 80045, USA.



Intravenous prostanoids (epoprostenol and treprostinil) are effective therapies for pulmonary arterial hypertension but carry a risk of catheter-related bloodstream infection (CR-BSI). Prevention of CR-BSI during long-term use of indwelling central venous catheters is important.


To evaluate whether using a closed-hub system and waterproofing catheter hub connections reduces the rate of CR-BSI per 1,000 catheter-days.


Single-center open observational study (January 2003-December 2008).


Pediatric patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension who received intravenous prostanoids.


In July 2007, CR-BSI preventive measures were implemented, including the use of a closed-hub system and the waterproofing of catheter hub connections during showering. Rates of CR-BSI before and after implementing preventive measures were compared with respect to medication administered and type of bacterial infection.


Fifty patients received intravenous prostanoid therapy for a total of 41,840 catheter-days. The rate of CR-BSI during the study period was 0.51 infections per 1,000 catheter-days for epoprostenol and 1.38 infections per 1,000 catheter-days for treprostinil, which differed significantly (P < .01). CR-BSIs caused by gram-negative pathogens occurred more frequently with treprostinil than with epoprostenol (0.91 infections per 1,000 catheter-days vs 0.08 infections per 1,000 catheter-days; P < .01). Patients treated with treprostinil after the implemented changes had a significant decrease in CR-BSI rate (1.95 infections per 1,000 catheter-days vs 0.19 infections per 1,000 catheter-days; P < .01).


The closed-hub system and the maintenance of dry catheter hub connections significantly reduced the incidence of CR-BSI (particularly infections caused by gram-negative pathogens) in patients receiving intravenous treprostinil.

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