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Radiology. 2005 Mar;234(3):887-92.

Placement of peripherally inserted central catheters without fluoroscopy in children: initial catheter tip position.

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Department of Radiology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, 3333 Burnet Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45229-3039, USA.



To determine how often placement of peripherally inserted central catheters (PICCs) without imaging guidance results in an initially correct central venous catheter tip location.


This study was approved by the hospital's institutional review board, which waived the requirement for informed consent. In a children's hospital, 843 PICCs were placed in 698 patients (age range, 0 days to 26 years; mean, 6.9 years) during a 14-month study period. All PICCs were placed by a specialized team of PICC nurses and interventional radiology technologists in an angiography suite with the supervision of pediatric interventional radiologists. All catheters were threaded blindly to a previously estimated length by either a PICC nurse or a pediatric interventional radiologist, according to National Association of Vascular Access Networks guidelines, and the initial PICC tip location was then determined by means of spot fluoroscopy. PICC tips were regarded as central if they resided anywhere within the superior vena cava (SVC). All catheters were then manipulated with intermittent fluoroscopic guidance to achieve a final central position in the distal third of the SVC. A chi2 test was used to compare initial and final PICC tip locations according to patient age, catheter size, accessed vein, and need for radiologist assistance. A t test was used to compare procedure time with and without radiologist assistance.


Analysis included 843 consecutively placed pediatric PICCs, of which 723 (85.8%) had a noncentral initial PICC tip position and required additional manipulation. After catheter repositioning performed with intermittent fluoroscopic guidance, a final central PICC tip location was achieved in 760 PICCs (90.2%).


Pediatric PICC placement without fluoroscopic guidance required catheter manipulation of initial PICC tip position in 723 cases (85.8%). PICC placement with fluoroscopic guidance is highly successful, and the authors believe it is best performed in an angiography suite.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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