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Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 1998 Jun;19(6):401-6.

Study of a needleless intermittent intravenous-access system for peripheral infusions: analysis of staff, patient, and institutional outcomes.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, NY, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the effect on staff- and patient-related complications of a needleless intermittent intravenous access system with a reflux valve for peripheral infusions.

DESIGN:

A 6-month cross-over clinical trial (phase I, 13 weeks; phase II, 12 weeks) of a needleless intermittent intravenous access system (NL; study device) compared to a conventional heparin-lock system (CHL, control device) was performed during 1991 on 16 medical and surgical units. A random selection of patients was assessed for local intravenous-site complications; all patients were assessed for the development of nosocomial bacteremia and device-related complications. Staff were assessed for percutaneous injuries and participated in completion of product evaluations. A cost analysis of the study compared to the control device was performed.

SETTING:

A 1,100-bed, teaching, referral medical center. PATIENTS AND STAFF PARTICIPANTS: 594 patients during 602 patient admissions, comprising a random sample of all patients with a study or control device inserted within a previous 24-hour period on study and control units, were assessed for local complications. The 16 units included adult inpatient general medicine, surgical, and subspecialty units. Pediatrics, obstetrics-gynecology, and intensive-care units were excluded. All patients on study and control units were assessed for development of nosocomial bacteremia and device-related complications. All staff who utilized, manipulated, or may have been exposed to sharps on study and control units were assessed for percutaneous injuries. Nursing staff completed product evaluations.

INTERVENTION:

The study device, a needleless intermittent intravenous access system with a reflux valve, was compared to the control device, a conventional heparin lock, for peripheral infusions.

RESULTS:

During the study, 35 percutaneous injuries were reported. Eight injuries were CHL-related; no NL-related injuries were reported (P=.007). An evaluation of 602 patient admissions, 1,134 intermittent access devices, and 2,268 observed indwelling device days demonstrated more pain at the insertion site for CHL than NL; however, no differences in objective signs of phlebitis were noted. Of 773 episodes of positive blood cultures on study and control units, 6 (0.8%) were device-related (assessed by blinded investigator), with no difference between NL and CHL. Complications, including difficulty with infusion (P<.001) and disconnection of intravenous tubing from device (P<.001), were reported more frequently with CHL than with NL. Of nursing staff responding to a product evaluation survey, 95.2% preferred the study over control device. The projected annual incremental cost to our institution for hospitalwide implementation of NL for intermittent access for peripheral infusions was estimated at $82,845, or $230 per 1,000 patient days.

CONCLUSIONS:

A needleless intermittent intravenous access system with a reflux valve for peripheral infusions is effective in reducing percutaneous injuries to staff and is not associated with an increase in either insertion-site complications or nosocomial bacteremia. Institutions should consider these data, available institutional resources, and institution-specific data regarding the frequency and risk of intermittent access-device-related injuries and other types of sharps injuries in their staff when selecting the above or other safety devices.

PMID:
9669621
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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