Central Venous Line Insertion


A central venous line insertion is a procedure that allows a patient to receive fluids, medication, or nutrients over an extended period through a catheter. For children, the catheter is usually inserted in the neck, chest, or groin.

What is it? 

A central line insertion is a mechanism for accessing the primary venous system. This may be necessary for the long-term administration of medications in the inpatient setting. Central line placement presents a relatively small risk of infection and may, therefore, be a preferred method of providing medications through the blood. Nutrition may also be delivered through a central line.

What should I do to prepare? 

There is no specific preparation necessary for central venous line insertion. Preparation for local anesthesia may be necessary.

What happens during the process? 

This procedure involves the use of local anesthesia for the site of the catheter insertion. An injection site near the collarbone will be cleaned, and a needle will be inserted into a catheter that is sutured into position. Appropriate medications will be supplied through the needle.

What are the risks and potential complications?

Central venous line insertion can involve risk of infection, blood vessel laceration or puncture, hematoma, collapsed lung, and blood clot.


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