Intravenous literature: Shen, G., Gao, Y., Wang, Y., Mao, B. and Wang, X. (2009) Survey of the long-term use of peripherally inserted central venous catheters in children with cancer: experience in a developing country. Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. 31(7). p.489-92.
Peripherally inserted central catheters (PICCs) have been used for many years in developed countries, but few studies have been focused on children with cancer in developing countries. In this study, we assessed the feasibility of PICCs and determined the rate of PICC-related complications in children with cancer. We prospectively followed all children with cancer over 3 years of age who received chemotherapy and PICC placement in our cancer center between June 2003 and May 2007. The date of last follow-up was January 31, 2008. A total of 119 PICCs were inserted into 116 patients during the 48-month period. PICCs were placed in 113 of 119 attempts, yielding an insertion rate of 95.0%. The 113 PICCs were in place for a total 26,721 catheter days (median time, 246 d; range, 8 to 455 d). The 113 PICCs had 53 overall complications, for a rate of 1.98/1000 catheter days. Twenty-one (18.6%) PICCs were removed because of complication with a rate of 0.79/1000 catheter days. The most common reason for PICC removal was breakage/leakage. An infection requiring PICC removal occurred in 4 patients. This study demonstrated relatively low complication rate and long duration for PICCs in children with cancer over 3 years of age in our hospital.