Central venous catheters (CVCs) have been widely used in the United States since their introduction in the early 1950s, and their use has continued to rise dramatically in recent years. With millions of CVCs placed annually, these devices have become a large part of patient care for administering fluids, medications, blood products, and parenteral nutrition; monitoring hemodynamic parameters; obtaining blood samples; and providing hemodialysis. Although the use of these devices has increased, complications with their use are still present.

One common complication is infection. Catheter-related blood stream infections (CRBSIs) have been estimated at 80000 cases in intensive care units and more than 250 000 cases overall in the United States annually. With specific regard to pediatric intensive care populations, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports the incidence to be as high as 7.6 cases per 1000 catheter days.3...

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