Technique for the removal of stuck implanted port vascular access device


Intravenous literature: De Lucia, R., Segreti, L., Soldati, E., Di Corim, A., Zucchelli, G. and Bongiorni, M.G. (2013) Port-a-Cath complicated by infection or migration not removed by manual traction: usefulness of cardiac pacing leads extraction techniques. Annals of Vascular Surgery. 27(4), p.529-36.


BACKGROUND: Long-term use of Port-a-Caths (PACs) is related to device-related delayed complications. The aim of this study is to describe the high success rate and safety of cardiac pacing lead extraction techniques used for PACs complicated by infection or migration and not removed by manual traction.

METHODS: During a 13-year period (1997-2010), 19 consecutive PAC recipients (54.1±13 years, 11 females) were referred to our hospital for PAC-related delayed complications and PACs not removable by manual traction (mean dwelling time 29.3±31 months).

RESULTS: PAC implantation indications included gastrointestinal cancer (21%), breast cancer (15.7%), other malignant diseases (52.6%), and nonmalignant diseases (10.5%). PAC removal indications were breakdown due to subclavian crush (63.1%), breakdown due to unsuccessful previous removal attempt (21%), sepsis (10.5%), or malfunction (5.3%). Removal of fractured free-floating catheters (16) migrated toward the venous blood course was attempted by tool-guided traction in all cases except 1 in whom mechanical dilation was necessary. For the 3 intact ones (2 infected and one malfunctioning) we used tool-guided traction and single-sheath mechanical dilation, depending on the vascular/cardiac-catheter setting. By using multiple venous approaches we removed 18 catheters completely and 1 partially, achieving clinical success in all of the patients. The most commonly used venous approach was transfemoral (TFA; 73.6%), followed by the original venous entry site approach (VEA; 15.7%) and internal transjugular approach (ITA; 10.5%). No major or minor complications were observed.

CONCLUSIONS: In experienced centers, cardiac pacing lead extraction techniques may be considered as an additional, efficacious, safe option for extraction of otherwise nonremovable entrapped PACs before surgery.

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