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J Infus Nurs. 2008 May-Jun;31(3):182-8. doi: 10.1097/01.NAN.0000317704.03415.b9.

Peripheral IVs: factors affecting complications and patency--a randomized controlled trial.

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Department of Pediatrics, Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi, India.


Peripheral intravenous access is a common but stressful pediatric procedure. Though in use for some decades now, there is no consensus on factors affecting the duration of patency and complications. The present study is a randomized controlled trial covering all aspects associated with vascular access. This prospective interventional study was conducted over a period of 6 months in a general pediatric ward of Lady Hardinge Medical College and Associated Kalawati Saran Children's Hospital. This sample was composed of 88 patients, from neonates to 12-year-olds who were admitted to the pediatric ward, on whom a total of 377 catheters were started. Intravenous cannulations were randomized for heparin flushes (1:100 dilution) and splints. Prospective data were collected regarding duration of patency and complications. Both univariate and multivariate analysis were done. There was a statistically significant increase in the duration of patency with the use of heparin flushes and splints. The incidence of phlebitis increased with heparin flushes. Shorter patency duration and increased complications were associated with younger age, wrist and scalp insertions, and 24-gauge catheters.

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