Complications of catheters: tunneled and nontunneled

Adv Chronic Kidney Dis. 2012 May;19(3):188-94. doi: 10.1053/j.ackd.2012.04.004.


Central venous catheters for hemodialysis remain an indispensable modality of vascular access in the United States. Despite strong recommendations by the NKF-KDOQI guidelines to reduce the dependence on catheters, > 80% of all patients initiate hemodialysis using a central venous catheter. Although the tunneled dialysis catheters have some advantages, their disadvantages are many and often dwarf the miniscule advantages. This review is intended to discuss the complications--both acute and chronic--related to the use of tunneled dialysis catheters for hemodialysis access.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Catheterization, Central Venous / adverse effects*
  • Catheterization, Central Venous / methods
  • Catheters, Indwelling / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy*
  • Renal Dialysis / methods*