Life-threatening vascular complications after central venous catheter placement

European Radiology
S WickyA Denys


The purpose of this retrospective study was to report 11 cases of severe vascular complications after central venous catheter misplacement. For each patient, data collection included body mass index, the diagnosis at admission, the site of the procedure, the type of catheter, coagulation parameters, the imaging modalities performed and the applied treatment. Eight patients had a lesion of the subclavian artery. Brachiocephalic vein perforations were assessed in three more patients. All patients had a chest roentgenogram after the procedure, six a CT examination, and four an angiographic procedure. Seven patients had a body mass index above 30, and 5 patients had coagulation disorders prior to the procedure. Seven patients were conservatively managed, 2 patients died despite resuscitation, 1 patient was treated with a stent graft, and one by superselective embolization. Subclavian or jugular vein temporary catheter positioning is a practical approach. Identification of any iatrogenic perforation of the subclavian artery or central veins urges obtaining a chest roentgenogram and, when required, a chest CT, selective angiograms or venograms. Body mass index superior to 30, previous unsuccessful catheterization attempts, and coagul...Continue Reading


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