A retrospective evaluation of polyurethane, long-stay, peripheral venous cannulae in dogs undergoing radiotherapy

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The aim of this retrospective study was to review placement duration and associated complications of long-stay, peripheral venous cannulae in dogs undergoing a radiotherapy protocol. Factors affecting duration of stay of the cannulae were evaluated.


The records of patients which had a single-lumen, 16-gauge, 16-cm polyurethane cannulae inserted into a peripheral vein between 2010 and 2014 were reviewed.


Forty-one cannulae were placed in 41 patients. Median duration of cannula stay was 14 days (range 2 to 26). In 14 cases (˜34%) the cannula was removed at the end of the radiotherapy course. In 13 (˜32%) cases, cannula-related complications resulted in premature removal. Use of steroids and antibiotics appeared to be associated with a longer median duration of stay.


No life-threatening complications were encountered. Indwelling, polyurethane, saphenous cannulae were an effective and safe way to maintain venous access in this group of patients. Prednisolone and antibiotics were typically commenced for acute radiation side effects -midway through the protocol; therefore their association with length of stay may not be a direct result of their administration.

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