Access site complications and puncture site pain following transradial coronary procedures: a correlational study

Int J Nurs Stud. 2013 Oct;50(10):1304-13. doi: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2012.12.023. Epub 2013 Jan 23.


Background: Transradial coronary angiography (CA) and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) are gaining worldwide popularity due to the low incidence of major vascular complications and early mobilization of patients post procedures. Although post transradial access site complications are generally considered as minor in nature, they are not being routinely recorded in clinical settings.

Objectives: To evaluate the incidence of access site complications and level of puncture site pain experienced by patients undergoing transradial coronary procedures and to examine factors associated with access site complications occurrence and puncture site pain severity.

Methods: A cross-sectional correlational study of 85 Chinese speaking adult patients scheduled for elective transradial CA and or PCI. Ecchymosis, bleeding, hematoma and radial artery occlusion (RAO) were assessed through observation, palpation and plethysmographic signal of pulse oximetry after coronary procedures. Puncture site pain was assessed with a 100mm Visual Analogue Scale. Factors that were related to access site complications and puncture site pain were obtained from medical records.

Results: Ecchymosis was the most commonly reported transradial access site complication in this study. Paired t-test showed that the level of puncture site pain at 24 h was significantly (p<0.001) lower than that at 3 h after the procedure. Stepwise multivariable regression showed that female gender and shorter sheath time were found to be significantly associated with bleeding during gradual deflation of compression device. Only longer sheath time was significantly associated with RAO. Female gender and larger volume of compression air were associated with the presence of ecchymosis and puncture site pain at 3 h after procedure, respectively.

Conclusions: The study findings suggest that common access site complications post transradial coronary procedures among Chinese population are relatively minor in nature. Individual puncture site pain assessment during the period of hemostasis is important. Nurses should pay more attention to factors such as female gender, sheath time and volume of compression that are more likely to be associated with transradial access site complications and puncture site pain.

Keywords: Access site complications; Coronary angiography; Coronary angioplasty; PCI; Transradial.

Publication types

  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • China
  • Coronary Angiography / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • History, 18th Century
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / etiology*
  • Punctures / adverse effects*