Asked by: Dikra Palchen
medical health heart and cardiovascular diseases

Can a PICC line cause heart problems?

Last Updated: 26th January, 2020

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Discussion: Peripherally Inserted Central Catheters (PICC) are commonly used for prolonged intravenous access in acute care, home care and skilled nursing facilities. Cardiac arrhythmias including SVT and ventricular tachycardia are rare complications of PICC lines based on our literature search.

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Similarly, can a PICC line cause a heart attack?

Very rare complications of PICC include pulmonary or air embolism, catheter fragment embolism, and perforation of the right atrium or SVC causing cardiac tamponade. Thus far, case reports in the medical literature have described arterial PICC placement with the catheter tip central to the carotid or vertebral arteries.

Beside above, can a PICC line cause chest pain? Fracture and embolization is a rare mechanical complication of PICC lines that may remain asymptomatic but should be considered by hospitalists whenever chest pain occurs after port flushing.

Also Know, why does a PICC line go to the heart?

A PICC line gives your doctor access to the large central veins near the heart. It's generally used to give medications or liquid nutrition. A PICC line can help avoid the pain of frequent needle sticks and reduce the risk of irritation to the smaller veins in your arms.

Can a PICC line cause AFIB?

Arrhythmias are common in hospitalized patients and during surgery. We present a case of positional atrial arrhythmia related to a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC). Practitioners should consider PICC line tip position as a rare cause of positional atrial arrhythmias.

Related Question Answers

Regina Forberger

Professional

Do all PICC lines go to the heart?

A PICC is inserted in a peripheral vein in the arm, such as the cephalic vein, basilic vein or brachial vein, and then advanced proximally toward the heart through increasingly larger veins, until the tip rests in the distal superior vena cava or cavoatrial junction.

Elden Urbaniack

Professional

What are the dangers of a PICC line?

Infection: An infection may form at the insertion site, an event that is more likely the longer the PICC line remains in place. Blood Clot: Blood clots can form on the tip of the PICC line, if these clots break free they can travel through the heart to the lung, a condition called a Pulmonary Embolism (PE).

Bully Sivasubramaniam

Professional

How often should a PICC line be flushed?

The PICC needs to be flushed once weekly with 10mls of 0.9% Sodium Chloride to maintain patency when not in use or after any infusion or bolus injection. There is no need to withdraw blood into the syringe prior to a routine flush with saline (RCN 2010).

Diamar Hoces

Explainer

How can you tell if your PICC line is infected?

If you notice any of these signs of infection, tell your doctor or nurse right away.
  1. Redness at the site, or red streaks around the site.
  2. Swelling or warmth at the site.
  3. Yellow or green drainage.
  4. Pain or discomfort.
  5. Fever.

Iulica Gruss

Explainer

What can you not eat with a PICC line?

Avoid strenuous activity or activities that have constant arm movement, such as: moving heavy objects over 10 pounds or 4.5 kilograms; jumping jacks; weight lifting; or vacuuming. Performing these activities may cause the PICC to block or the tip of the PICC to no longer be in the correct position.

Aicong Cardal

Explainer

How long can you keep a PICC line in?

The PICC line can stay in your arm for as long as 12 months, although the average length is usually about 6 months, depending on your treatment requirements. Care of the PICC Line.

Silmara Yakimychev

Pundit

What is the alternative to a PICC line?

PICC Line Alternatives:
The most common alternative is a portacath, also known as a port.

Maanan Pituhin

Pundit

Are you sedated for PICC line insertion?

A peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC line) is most often used to deliver medication over a long period. The doctor or nurse inserts the PICC line, which is a thin tube, into a vein in the arm. Children who are not sedated are given a local anesthetic to numb the area where the catheter is inserted.

Borislava Suppus

Pundit

Can you shower with a PICC line?

You may take baths or showers, but your PICC and all of its connections must be completely covered to be sure that the PICC and its dressing remain dry. Do NOT allow your PICC to go under water in a pool or tub. • To protect your PICC from getting wet in the shower or bath, cover it completely with a plastic wrap.

Audrius Mandelstam

Pundit

Is a PICC line serious?

PICC line. These blood clots can form in the arms of patients with PICC devices, causing pain, blocking the IV line and, most dangerous of all, potentially breaking off and traveling to the lungs.

Arvydas Mitteldorf

Pundit

Can you exercise with a PICC line?

Do not carry heavy weights (more than 5lbs). Do not exercise vigorously with your arm while the PICC is in place. Avoid contact with water when you have a PICC. Do not swim or take a tub bath (submerge) while the PICC is in place.

Xiaowu Olivero

Teacher

Why does my PICC line hurt?

You might notice a discomfort in your PICC line arm or shoulder. It may become red and swollen, or you may notice swelling of the veins of your neck. You may have some bleeding from the insertion site of the PICC line within the first 24 hours after insertion: this is normal.

Lean Marroun

Teacher

Can you take a blood pressure on an arm with a PICC line?

* Don't take the patient's blood pressure on the arm with the PICC. Cuff pressure can cause bleeding at the insertion site, increase the risk of thrombus formation, and cause retrograde blood flow, raising the risk of catheter occlusion.

Irais Belausteguigoitia

Teacher

Can you sleep on a PICC line?

You won't need general anesthesia (medication to make you sleep). Once the area is numb, the doctor or nurse will make a small incision (surgical cut) in your upper arm. They will place the PICC into a vein in your arm and gently move the end of the PICC into a vein near your heart (see Figure 1).

Idaly Busenius

Teacher

Does a central line go into the heart?

Central venous line: A catheter (tube) that is passed through a vein to end up in the thoracic (chest) portion of the vena cava (the large vein returning blood to the heart) or in the right atrium of the heart. A central venous line allows concentrated solutions to be infused with less risk of complications.

Zsuzsa Schitthelm

Reviewer

Why would you need a PICC line?

Why is a PICC line important? It is important because it provides an efficient means for those who require chemotherapy, intravenous medication or fluids for a long period. It is also used when one requires frequent blood sampling.

Rashpal Twesmann

Reviewer

Can you go home with a PICC line?

You are going home with a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC). At home, you need to take care of your PICC to keep it working. Because a PICC line has a high infection risk, you must take extra care washing your hands and preventing the spread of germs.

Claudiu Celis

Reviewer

How painful is PICC line insertion?

The PICC nurse will use an ultrasound machine to locate the best vein in your arm to place the PICC line. This will not hurt. Once the area is identified your arm will be cleaned with a strong antiseptic. The area above the vein will be anesthetized with lidocaine through a small needle.

Sherril Contini

Reviewer

Can blood be drawn from a PICC line?

Answer: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not state that it is inappropriate to draw blood from a PICC line. Instead they give the following process as the one to follow when drawing blood from a PICC line (CDC, 2011): Access the catheter as outlined above, maintaining aseptic technique.