Guidelines for the use of long-term central venous catheter in children with hemato-oncological disorders. On behalf of supportive therapy working group of Italian Association of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology (AIEOP)

Ann Hematol. 2013 Oct;92(10):1405-12. doi: 10.1007/s00277-013-1794-1. Epub 2013 Jun 16.


In the last 30 years, the use of long-term central venous catheters (CVC) is increased especially for children with hemato-oncological disorders. However, the use of CVC is associated to complications, as mechanical accidents, thrombosis, and infections that can determine a prolongation of hospital stay, an increase of costs, and sometimes life-threatening conditions that require urgent systemic treatment or CVC removal. CVC removal may be troublesome especially in neonates, infants, or any other "highly needed CVC patients"; in these selected cases, the prevention and treatment of CVC-related complications play a pivotal role and specific surveillance programs are crucial. While extensive literature is focused on CVC management in adults, no guidelines are available for children. To this aim, the first recommendations for the management of CVC infectious complication in pediatric age have been written after pediatric and adult literature review and collegial discussion among members of Supportive Therapy working group of Italian Association of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology. Compared to the adult age, the necessity of peripheral vein cultures for the diagnosis of CVC-related infection remains controversial in children because of the poorer venous asset and a conservative, pharmacologically focused management through CVC remains mandatory, with CVC removal to be performed only in selected cases.

MeSH terms

  • Catheter-Related Infections / prevention & control*
  • Catheterization, Central Venous / adverse effects*
  • Catheters, Indwelling / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Thrombosis / prevention & control