Objective: To compare dialysis catheter function according to catheter site.
Design: Multicenter, open, randomized controlled trial.
Setting: Nine university-affiliated hospitals and three general hospitals in France.
Patients: Seven hundred thirty-six patients in intensive care units who required a first venous catheterization to perform either intermittent hemodialysis (470 patients with 1275 sessions) or continuous renal replacement therapy (266 patients with 1003 days).
Intervention: Patients randomly received either femoral (n = 370) or jugular (n = 366) catheterization. For the jugular site, right-side position (n = 252) was recommended.
Measurements and main results: Time to catheter ablation for dysfunction, urea reduction ratio (intermittent hemodialysis), and downtime (continuous renal replacement therapy) were assessed for all participants and evaluated by randomly assigned catheterization site (femoral or jugular). Baseline demography and dialysis prescriptions were similar between the site arms. In modified intent-to-treat, catheter dysfunction occurred in 36 of 348 (10.3%) and 38 of 342 (11.1%) patients in the femoral and jugular groups, respectively. The risk of catheter dysfunction did not significantly differ between randomized groups (hazard ratio, 1.06; 95% confidence interval, 0.67-1.68; p = .80). Compared to the femoral site, the observed risk of dysfunction decreased in the right jugular position (15 of 226; 6.6%; adjusted hazard ratio, 0.58; 95% confidence interval, 0.31-1.07; p = .09) and significantly increased in the left jugular position (23 of 118; 19.5%; adjusted hazard ratio, 1.89; 95% confidence interval, 1.12-3.21; p < .02). The postintermittent hemodialysis mean urea reduction ratio per session was 50.8% (standard deviation, 16.1) for femoral vs. 52.8% (standard deviation, 15.8) for jugular (p = .30) sites, and the median continuous renal replacement therapy downtime per patient-day was 1.17 hrs (interquartile range, 0.75-1.50) for both sites (p = .98).
Conclusions: In terms of catheter dysfunction and dialysis performance among critically ill adults requiring acute renal replacement therapy, jugular site did not significantly outperform femoral site placement.