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Crispin, Alexander; Thul, Paul; Arnold, Dirk; Schild, Sandra and Weimann, Arved (2008): Central Venous Catheter Complications during Home Parenteral Nutrition: A Prospective Pilot Study of 481 Patients with More than 30,000 Catheter Days. In: Onkologie, No. 11: pp. 605-609 [PDF, 116kB]


Background: Home parenteral nutrition (HPN) has been shown to delay deterioration in cancer patients with malnutrition. Its risk-benefit ratio, however, is determined by the threat of central venous catheter (CVC) complications. Only few prospective studies on this subject exist, most of them based on small samples. The objective of this study was to provide reliable estimates of incidence rates of CVC complications in everyday HPN patient care in Germany. Patients and Methods: Aiming for a large prospective cohort study, we cooperated with a service provider caring for HPN patients nationwide. Between July 1 and November 30, 2006, all consecutive adult patients with more than 10 infusion days and no previous history of HPN were recruited. Follow-up ended on January 31, 2007. Data were collected in a standardised way by the provider's staff. To prevent underreporting, we used computer-assisted telephone interviews with medical caregivers as a provider-independent data source. Results: 481 patients met the inclusion criteria, contributing a total of 31,337 catheter days. 52 patients experienced a total of 63 CVC complications, resulting in an incidence rate of 2.01 CVC complications per 1,000 catheter days including 1.02 CVC infections per 1,000 catheter days. Conclusion: HPN administration can be safely performed with a relatively low rate of CVC complications.

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