Background and aims The placement of a Central Venous Catheter (CVC) is routine clinical practice for sick and preterm infants on the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Such catheters are vital to ensure reliable and continuous delivery of nutrition and medication.
Thrombus related to the placement of such catheters is well described.1
Controversies exist around the prevention, surveillance and management of such thrombus.
We reviewed all cases of CVC related thrombus within the neonatal service over the last 3 years and to determine normal practice for managing such infants within the UK.
Methods Retrospective review of all cases of CVC related thrombus (as defined by any venous thrombus with an indwelling or recently removed catheter) within the last 3 years.
A national survey of the management of CVC related thrombus within tertiary neonatal units in the UK.
Results 7 infants (all pre term) were diagnosed with CVC related thrombus during the study period.
The national survey revealed no consensus for management.
Conclusions CVC related thrombus has been associated with 1 death and significant morbidity within our service over the last 3 years.
Further work is urgently needed to determine the scale of the problem and best practice for management.
1 Haddad H et al. Routine Surveillance Ultrasound for the management of CVC in neonates. J Pediatr 2014 Jan;164(1):118-22