An attachable silver-impregnated cuff for prevention of infection with central venous catheters: a prospective randomized multicenter trial

The American Journal of Medicine
D G MakiR B Helgerson


Percutaneously inserted central venous catheters are widely used. Catheter-related bacteremia or fungemia is the most frequent serious complication of these catheters. In an attempt to reduce the frequency of such infections, a subcutaneous cuff constructed of a biodegradable collagen matrix impregnated with bactericidal silver was developed. Our goal was to assess, in a multicenter clinical trial, the effectiveness of this cuff in preventing catheter-related infection. Central venous catheters needed for fluid or drug therapy, hemodynamic monitoring, or hyperalimentation in patients in three centers were randomly assigned to be inserted with or without the cuff. Patients and catheters in the two groups were comparable in terms of risk factors predisposing to infection, including colonization of skin about the insertion site. The results with 234 catheters inserted into a new site showed that catheters inserted with the cuff were threefold less likely to be colonized on removal (more than 15 colony-forming units) than were control catheters (28.9 percent versus 9.1 percent, p = 0.002) and were nearly fourfold less likely to produce bacteremia (3.7 percent versus 1.0 percent). Adverse effects from the cuff were not seen. The cuf...Continue Reading


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