Peripheral intravenous catheters (PVCs) are essential invasive devices, with 2 billion PVCs sold each year. The comparative efficacy of expert versus generalist inserter models for successful PVC insertion and subsequent reliable vascular access is unknown” Marsh et al (2018).
BACKGROUND: Peripheral intravenous catheters (PVCs) are essential invasive devices, with 2 billion PVCs sold each year. The comparative efficacy of expert versus generalist inserter models for successful PVC insertion and subsequent reliable vascular access is unknown.
METHODS: A single-centre, parallel-group, pilot randomised controlled trial (RCT) of 138 medical/surgical patients was conducted in a large tertiary hospital in Australia to compare PVC insertion by (1) a vascular access specialist (VAS) or (2) any nursing or medical clinician (generalist model). The primary outcome was the feasibility of a larger RCT as established by predetermined criteria (eligibility, recruitment, retention, protocol adherence). Secondary outcomes were PVC failure: phlebitis, infiltration/extravasation, occlusion, accidental removal or partial dislodgement, local infection or catheter-related bloodstream infection; dwell time; insertion success, insertion attempts; patient satisfaction; and procedural cost-effectiveness.
RESULTS: Feasibility outcomes were achieved: 92% of screened patients were eligible; two patients refused participation; there was no attrition or missing outcome data. PVC failure was higher with generalists (27/50, 54%) than with VASs (33/69, 48%) (228 versus 217 per 1000 PVC days; incidence rate ratio 1.05, 95% confidence interval 0.61-1.80). There were no local or PVC-related infections in either group. All PVCs (n = 69) were successfully inserted in the VAS group. In the generalist group, 19 (28%) patients did not have a PVC inserted. There were inadequate data available for the cost-effectiveness analysis, but the mean insertion procedure time was 2 min in the VAS group and 11 min in the generalist group. Overall satisfaction with the PVC was measured on an 11-point scale (0 = not satisfied and 10 = satisfied) and was higher in the VAS group (n = 43; median = 7) compared to the generalist group (n = 20; median = 4.5). The multivariable model identified medical diagnosis and bed-bound status as being significantly associated with higher PVC failure, and securement with additional non-sterile tape was significantly associated with lower PVC failure.
CONCLUSION: This pilot trial confirmed the feasibility and need for a large, multicentre RCT to test these PVC insertion models.
TRIAL REGISTRATION: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry, ACTRN12616001675415 . Registered on 6 December 2016.
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Marsh, N., Webster, J., Larsen, E., Genzel, J., Cooke, M., Mihala, G., Cadigan, S. and Rickard, C.M. (2018) Expert versus generalist inserters for peripheral intravenous catheter insertion: a pilot randomised controlled trial. Trials. 19(1), p.564.