CLABSI prevention and treatment: Ethanol lock therapy in pediatric hematology and oncology

Safety IV catheter

Intravenous literature: Wolf, J., Shenep, J.L., Clifford, V., Curtis, N. and Flynn, P.M. (2012) Ethanol lock therapy in pediatric hematology and oncology. Medical and Pediatric Oncology. Aug 21. .


Central venous catheters are essential for treatment of cancer and hematologic disorders in children. Central line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) is the most common important complication and can lead to serious sequelae. Conventional antibiotic treatment is often unsuccessful. Ethanol lock therapy (ELT) has been shown to prevent CLABSI in various patient groups and might also be beneficial as adjunctive treatment for active infection. Efficacy and safety have not been adequately studied in the pediatric hematology/oncology population. Catheter occlusion and intraluminal clots have been reported. Routine use of ELT should not be recommended in this population until more data are available.

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