Prevention of central venous catheter-related infections and thrombotic events in immunocompromised children by the use of vancomycin/ciprofloxacin/heparin flush solution: A randomized, multicenter, double-blind trial

K J Henrickson, R A Axtell, S M Hoover, S M Kuhn, J Pritchett, S C Kehl, J P Klein
Journal of Clinical Oncology 2000, 18 (6): 1269-78

PURPOSE: To determine whether an antibiotic flush solution containing vancomycin, heparin, and ciprofloxacin (VHC) can prevent the majority of line infections.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: A prospective double-blind study was performed comparing VHC to vancomycin and heparin (VH) to heparin alone in 126 pediatric oncology patients.

RESULTS: The 153 assessable lines resulted in 36,944 line days studied. There were 58 blood stream infections (43 gram-positive, 14 gram-negative, and one fungal). Forty were defined as line infections (31 heparin, three VH, six VHC). The time to develop a line infection was significantly increased using either antibiotic flush (VH, P =.011; VHC, P =.036). The rate of total line infections (VH, P =.004; VHC, P =.005), gram-positive line infections (VH, P =. 028; VHC, P =.022), and gram-negative line infections (VH, P =.006; VHC, P =.003) was significantly reduced by either VH or VHC. Sixty-two (41%) of the lines developed 119 occlusion episodes (heparin, 3.99 per 1,000 line days; VHC, 1.75 per 1,000 line days; P =.0005). Neither antibiotic could be detected after flushing, and no adverse events were detected, including increased incidence of vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus colonization or disease.

CONCLUSION: The use of either VH or VHC flush solution significantly decreased the complications associated with the use of tunneled central venous lines in immunocompromised children and would save significant health care resources.

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