According to the 2011 Infusion Nursing Standards of Practice, the low pH of intravenous vancomycin requires that it be administered through a central line. However, a careful review of the literature and a retrospective analysis of the experience at New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) did not support the position of the Standards.Purpose:
A prospective, controlled, randomized clinical trial was conducted to determine if intravenous vancomycin could be safely administered through a novel midline catheter (POWERWAND®, Access Scientific, San Diego, CA).Methods:
Patients scheduled to receive short-term (<6 days) intravenous vancomycin were randomly assigned to receive treatment through either a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) or the midline study device. Complications and the costs of insertion were recorded.Results:
The two groups did not differ significantly with respect to total complications (17.9% with PICCs vs. 19.9% with the midline), phlebitis (0% vs. 0%) or thrombosis (0% vs. 0%). One suspected catheter-associated bloodstream infection did occur in the PICC group. Insertion costs were $90.00 less per insertion in the midline group.Conclusions:
Short-term intravenous vancomycin can be safely and cost-efficiently administered in the deep vessels of the upper arm using the midline study device.