Pericardial effusion and tamponade as a result of percutaneous silastic catheter use

Neonatal Netw. 1998 Aug;17(5):39-42.


Percutaneous Silastic catheters (PSCs) are used in premature infants to deliver total parenteral nutrition. We report two cases in which migration of the catheter into the right atrium resulted in rapid onset of shocklike symptoms. Pericardial effusion and tamponade were diagnosed by echocardiography. Subxiphoid pericardiocenteses were performed, with immediate clinical improvement. In both cases, fluid withdrawn from the pericardial space was analyzed to be hyperalimentation and intravenous fat emulsion. Pericardial effusion and tamponade should be suspected in any infant with a PSC line in place who develops sudden onset of shocklike symptoms.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Cardiac Tamponade / diagnostic imaging
  • Cardiac Tamponade / etiology*
  • Catheterization, Central Venous / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Neonatal Nursing
  • Pericardial Effusion / diagnostic imaging
  • Pericardial Effusion / etiology*
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Radiography
  • Silicone Elastomers


  • Silicone Elastomers