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Study: Placing Catheter Under Collarbone Best for Patients


Study: Placing Catheter Under Collarbone Best for PatientsA new study has found that a catheter placed in the vein under the collarbone appears to lower the risk of infections and clots in an intensive care unit patient’s bloodstream.

In fact, according to the researchers behind the study, it lowered those risks by two to three times in comparison to catheters placed in other areas, such as the large vein in the groin or the jugular vein in the neck.

Catheter-related infections usually occur as a result of bacteria on the skin which attach themselves to it as it’s inserted and find their way into the patient’s bloodstream.

Despite placing a catheter in the vein under the collarbone being the preferred method, according to the study, a lot depends on the skill of the individual placing it. Ultrasound is inevitably used to guide the procedure and this reduces the risk of a patient encountering a problem like a collapsed lung.

Lead researcher Dr. Jean-Jacques Parienti, from the department of biostatistics and clinical research at the Cote de Nacre University Hospital in Caen, France, said: "The [under the collarbone] route is the safest for the patient, provided that everything is done to reduce the risk of mechanical complications during insertion."

The findings of the study were published in the New England Journal of Medicine on September 24.



Photo via: National Cancer Institute