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Crit Care Med. 1995 Jan;23(1):60-5.

Facilitation of internal jugular venous cannulation using an audio-guided Doppler ultrasound vascular access device: results from a prospective, dual-center, randomized, crossover clinical study.

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Department of Anesthesiology, University of Maryland Medical System, Baltimore 21201-1595.



To determine the utility of an audio-guided Doppler ultrasound device in improving success and decreasing complications in cannulation of the internal jugular vein in high-risk patients.


Prospective, randomized, crossover clinical study.


Two major university medical centers in critical care environments.


Seventy-six consecutive, consenting adult patients with preexisting obesity or coagulopathy requiring central venous access.


Subjects enrolled in the study were randomized to receive either the traditional "blind" (control) technique or the ultrasonic technique. A maximum of three cannulation attempts were allowed before crossover to three attempts with the alternative technique. All cannulations were attempted via the internal jugular vein through a high/central approach.


Patient and operator characteristics were similar between groups. The initial use of an audio-guided ultrasound device was associated with increased success of cannulation (84.4% vs. 61.4%; p < .05) and decreased need to crossover to the alternative technique. Success on the first needle pass was more likely with the ultrasound technique (56.3% vs. 29.5%; p < .05). Significant complications were greater with the control technique (carotid artery puncture 16.3% vs. 2.0% [p < .02]; any significant complication 26.5% vs. 6.1% [p < .01]).


The use of an audio-guided Doppler ultrasound vascular access device was associated with increased success of cannulation and a decreased frequency of significant complications in a population of high-risk patients with obesity or coagulopathy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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