Rare central venous catheter placement complication

"In this case, the patient with preexisting left bundle branch block suffered right bundle branch block, leading to complete heart block during CVC placement" Zhang et al (2019).
Abstract:

Central venous catheter (CVC) placement is an operation which can establish a fast, safe, and effective deep venous access to rescue patients under critical conditions, especially for those receiving hemodialysis. It is a simple operation with almost no complications, but different complications have been still reported, such as bleeding, infection, embolism, low blood flow, and cardiac arrhythmias. In this case, the patient with preexisting left bundle branch block suffered right bundle branch block, leading to complete heart block during CVC placement. When the patient developed complete heart block, we immediately treated him with isoproterenol, and the surgery was terminated as soon as possible. The patient gradually recovered the sinus rhythm after the treatment. This complication is rare but severe, and clinicians should recognize the risks and take strategies as early as possible. We think the cause of complete heart block in this patient may be related to mechanical trauma to the right ventricle by the guide wire or catheter insertion. Therefore, CVC placement should be performed with more caution, and the guide wire and catheter tip should be inserted less than 18 cm deep.

Reference:

Zhang, Y., Tan, Y. and Xiang, H. (2019) Complete heart block: A rare central venous catheter placement complication. Zhong Nan Da Xue Xue Bao Yi Xue Ban. 44(11), p.1306-1310. doi: 10.11817/j.issn.1672-7347.2019.180150. (Article in Chinese).

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