Intravenous literature: Infection Control Today report “A new study from Rhode Island Hospital has found that more than one in 10 catheter-related bloodstream infections due to Staph aureus in hospitalized adults are caused by infected peripheral venous catheters (PVC). The study points out the substantial medical burden that arises from complications from these infections due to the large number of such catheters used in hospitalized patients. The study is published in the journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology and is now available online in advance of print.
Senior author Leonard Mermel, DO, ScM, medical director of epidemiology and infection control at Rhode Island Hospital, and his colleagues note that Staphylococcus aureus is the second most common cause of hospital-acquired bloodstream infections. It is the pathogen most often associated with serious and costly catheter-related bloodstream infection. Thus, they were interested in investigating Staph aureus bloodstream infections associated with the commonly used PVCs.
They performed a point-prevalence survey and found that 76 percent of hospitalized adult patients had a PVC. They also found a greater than expected number of PVCs associated with Staph aureus bloodstream infections were placed in the emergency department, or an outside hospital, were inserted in the antecubital fossa (the “elbow pit”), and were in for a longer period of time compared to uninfected PVCs. In fact, 46 percent of patients with PVC-related Staph bloodstream infections had their PVCs in place for greater than three days.”