Long-term indwelling central venous catheters inserted peripherally for total intravenous nutrition have been complicated by thrombophlebitis in most instances. However, experiences with silicone elastomer catheters used in this manner have not been previously reported. In this investigation a crank introducer unit has been developed that has allowed 61-cm silicone elastomer catheters to be placed in the superior vena cava with insertion in the basillic or cephalic vein. Thirty-five patients (36 catheter placements) received total intravenous nutrition exclusively via these silicone elastomer catheters. The mean time indwelling was 20.4 days (range, four to 56 days). Thirty of the 36 catheters were removed when total intravenous nutrition was discontinued. Only six catheters were removed for nonvenous and venous reactions. These results have shown the safety and efficacy of peripherally inserted silicone elastomer central venous catheters.