Journal article

The influence of flushing epidural catheters before use on detection of intravenous placement: an in vitro and in vivo study

DN Bell, A O'Connor, K Leslie

ANAESTHESIA AND INTENSIVE CARE | AUSTRALIAN SOC ANAESTHETISTS | Published : 2007

Abstract

Undetected intravenous placement of epidural catheters is rare but potentially fatal and no perfect identification method exists. Epidural catheters may be flushed before insertion to identify faulty epidural catheters, or to prime the system with local anaesthetic. We hypothesised that flushing epidural catheters before insertion may delay the detection of intravenous placement. We investigated our theory using both in vitro and in vivo models. The in vitro component examined flowrates in flushed and unflushed epidural catheters, using conditions designed to mimic epidural venous pressure. The in vivo component examined the flow within flushed and unflushed epidural catheters inserted into ..

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