PVC dressings — comparing the old with the new

Peripheral venous catheters (PVC) are the most common invasive device worldwide. However, PVC failure is still unacceptably high. Up to 69% of devices fail due to dislodgement, vein wall irritation/inflammation, blockage, IV fluids entering surrounding tissue, or infection.

This study is a follow up from the last AVATAR article. The previous study found that additional securements of PICC lines are associated with less PICC failure. This study also led a large multicentre randomised controlled trial comparing four dressing and securement options within two adult tertiary hospitals in Brisbane, Australia. The research compared how these PVC dressings and securement options impacted on all-cause PVC failure, followed by an economic evaluation of each of the four treatment groups.

Additionally, the researchers address the use of dressing reinforcement by bedside clinicians (eg, non-sterile tapes; gauze and tubular bandaging) which most likely improved the performance of the four dressing and securement options. Their finding suggest that medical staff should consider these products for high risk and ‘difficult IV access’ patients.

The AVATAR (Alliance for Vascular Access Teaching and Research) Group, based in Queensland, is a respected independent research group specializing in highly credible scientific vascular access device research. AVATAR undertakes a significant program of clinical trials, laboratory, systematic review and knowledge translation research. Their aim is primarily to improve health services and patient outcomes. Secondly, to rigorously and independently test products and practices. Thirdly, to promote local and global networks.


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