A correct activated partial thromboplastin time is crucial for the management of patients receiving continuous intravenous heparin therapy. In this study, the accuracy of peripheral venous access devices for measurement of activated partial thromboplastin times is examined.

Peripheral venous access devices (VADs), also known as saline locks, have been in clinical use since the late 1970s. Considered the most common form of venous cannulation in hospitalized patients, VADs were introduced in 1945, when the first plastic catheter, the “intracath,” was used to deliver intravenous solutions.11 Historically, peripheral venous catheters were used to provide emergency and intermittent venous access for patients who were receiving fluid, blood products, and nutritional support. Patients who did not require continuous intravenous infusions often had placement of a second peripheral VAD for obtaining blood samples.22 The second VAD served as a...

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