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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Safety of prolonging peripheral cannula and i.v. tubing use from 72 hours to 96 hours.

OBJECTIVE: To compare the rates of phlebitis of peripheral intravenous lines left in place for 72 hours versus rates of those left in place 96 hours. DESIGN: A prospective, nonrandomized study. SETTING: A university teaching hospital with 375 beds. PATIENTS: Consecutive adult patients who received peripheral intravenous lines and were admitted to the wards. MEASUREMENTS: The phlebitis rates were monitored by the i.v. Team for 1 month according to a predetermined definition for phlebitis: palpable cord or at least two of the following: tenderness, warmth, erythema, and induration. RESULTS: A total of 2503 peripheral lines were evaluable. The overall phlebitis rate was 6.8%. The phlebitis rates for lines left in for 72 and 96 hours were not significantly different (3.3% vs 2.6%, p = 1.000) by Fisher's Exact Test and survival analysis. It was estimated that in 1 month approximately 300 intravenous lines potentially could be prolonged beyond 72 hours; 215 lines were changed at 72 hours despite no signs of inflammation, 61 lines were kept till 96 hours, and 19 lines were kept beyond 96 hours. CONCLUSIONS: Phlebitis rate for our peripheral intravenous catheters at 96 hours was not significantly different from that at 72 hours. If intravenous cannulas and lines were prolonged to 96 hours, a potential cost saving of $61,200 per year could be realized.[1]


  1. Safety of prolonging peripheral cannula and i.v. tubing use from 72 hours to 96 hours. Lai, K.K. American journal of infection control. (1998) [Pubmed]
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