Central vascular access devices (CVADs) are often essential to the care of patients undergoing long-term cancer treatment. CVAD maintenance is an essential oncology nurse competency. Evidence-based practice (EBP) in flushing and locking help to prevent intraluminal occlusion, a common complication. Heparinized saline (HS) has been the standard locking solution for CVADs. However, research indicates no superiority of HS over normal saline (NS). The objectives of this EBP project were 1) to evaluate whether a significant difference in intraluminal occlusion was associated with the change from HS to NS use for locking CVADs in ambulatory oncology care, and 2) to evaluate the effects of peer nurse mentoring on nurses’ and patients’ perspectives about the practice change. Analysis of data revealed decreases in alteplase usage after transitioning to NS locking. Patient and nurse surveys indicated that peer nurse mentoring increased nurse and patient confidence and competence in making the practice transition.Reference:
Jabaley T, Xiong N, Conley S, Mazeika T, Johnson D, Biggins BA, Hilton N, Hong F. Transitioning from heparin to saline locks for central venous access devices in oncology: An evidence-based practice approach. Can Oncol Nurs J. 2022 Apr 1;32(2):286-293. doi: 10.5737/23688076322286293. PMID: 35582245; PMCID: PMC9040787.