Series of implanted vascular access port catheter rupture

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“We report our experience with the accidental detection of catheter ruptures in a series of ports removed for complication or for end of use.” Balsorano et al (2014).

Reference:

Balsorano, P., Galducci, G., De Fanti, I., Evans, S.K., De Gaudio, A.R. and Pelagatti, C. (2014) Fractures of totally implantable central venous ports: more than fortuity. A three-year single center experience. The Journal of Vascular Access. July 8th. [epub ahead of print].

Abstract:

PURPOSE: Totally implantable venous access devices (Ports) represent the mainstay for infusion therapy in patients undergoing chemotherapy, total parenteral nutrition and/or long-term antibiotic treatment. Amongst mechanical complications, lesions of the catheter wall represent a rare but potentially severe condition. We report our experience with the accidental detection of catheter ruptures in a series of ports removed for complication or for end of use.

METHODS: All ports removed from January 2011 to June 2013 were considered. All removed ports had been inserted according to a standardized protocol including ultrasound-guided percutaneous venipuncture (out-of-plane or in-plane approaches) and electrocardiogram-guided positioning of the tip. Once removed, each catheter was checked by inspection and saline instillation in order to evaluate the integrity of the device itself and rule out possible ruptures.

RESULTS: In over 338 removed ports, 12 Groshong catheters out of 65 (18.5%) had evidence of partial rupture of the catheter wall. Amongst considered variables, “out-of-plane” approach and type of port (silicon, closed tip with Groshong valve) were the only ones significantly associated with catheter ruptures (p=0.0003 and 0.0008, respectively). We could detect no evidence of rupture in any silicon open-ended catheter (Celsite ports) or in any catheter inserted by “in-plane” approach to the vein.

CONCLUSIONS: The actual advantage of using port connected with Groshong silicon catheters should be questioned, since apparently they are more fragile than standard catheters. Furthermore, ultrasound-guided “out-of-plane” puncture of the internal jugular vein should be discouraged.

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