Incidence and risk factors of infusion phlebitis

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To determine the incidence and risk factors of phlebitis associated to the care of peripheral vascular catheters (PVC)” Arias-Fernández et al (2016).

Abstract:

OBJECTIVE: To determine the incidence and risk factors of phlebitis associated to the care of peripheral vascular catheters (PVC).

METHOD: Prospective cohort study at the Central University Hospital of Asturias (Spain). A total of 178PVC were observed daily until their extraction. The incidence of phlebitis was measured using the Visual Infusion Phlebitis Scale, that distinguishes between gradei (possible phlebitis) andii (phlebitis). The independent diagnoses of phlebitis made by staff nurses were also collected. Finally, data about the insertion and the care of the PVC was also obtained. The incidence of phlebitis and the validity of the diagnoses made by staff nurses were calculated and the risk factors of phlebitis were determined by means of logistic regression.

RESULTS: 5.6% of the PVC presented phlebitis, 21.3% possible phlebitis and 11.2% had phlebitis according to nurses’ criteria. The staff nurses had a sensitivity of 100%, a specificity of 94% and a positive predictive value of 50% in the diagnosis of phlebitis. After adjusting for potential confounders, the use of an extension tube as an accessory of the PVC was an independent predictor of phlebitis (odds ratio: 4.8; P=.04), but a PVC size of 22/24 gauges was associated with lower phlebitis incidence (odds ratio: 0.2; P=.02).

CONCLUSIONS: Clinical phlebitis assessment is difficult because the agreement for phlebitis diagnosis is low. To minimize the incidence of phlebitis would be recommended to choose the smallest PVC size possible and to avoid using an extension tube as an accessory of the PVC.

Reference:

Arias-Fernández, L., Suérez-Mier, B., Martínez-Ortega, M.D. and Lana, A. (2016) Incidence and risk factors of phlebitis associated to peripheral intravenous catheters. Enfermería Clínica. September 15th. [Epub ahead of print]. [Article in Spanish].

doi: 10.1016/j.enfcli.2016.07.008.

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