Long-term IV access in paediatrics - why, what, where, who and how

Acta Anaesthesiol Scand. 2021 Mar;65(3):282-291. doi: 10.1111/aas.13729. Epub 2020 Nov 17.


Establishment of long-term central venous access imposes the risk of procedural adverse events (air embolism, pneumothorax, accidental arterial cannulation of the great vessels, tricuspid valve damage and cardiac tamponade) as well as the risk of increased morbidity and mortality due to catheter related blood stream infections, vessel stenosis, deep vein thrombosis and the often high risk anaesthetic management of syndromic children. This narrative review aims to provide a historical and clinical background for the development and use of CVADs (central venous access devices), origin and management of the most common complications (catheter related thrombosis, infections and persistent withdrawal occlusion) and present the reader with an update on the "why, what, where, who and how" in paediatric long-term central venous access. Finally, we will present the reader with a clinical method for applying a retrograde inserted tunnelled and cuffed catheter using the left brachiocephalic vein access.

Keywords: CVC; brachiocephalic vein; catheter related thrombosis; central venous access; clabsi; long term; paediatric; tunnelled catheter; vascular access; venous thromboembolism.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Catheterization, Central Venous* / adverse effects
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Pediatrics*
  • Thrombosis*