Help! We are beginning to discharge more patients with PICC lines back to long-term care facilities. Many do not have IV certified staff and have to contract with home health care to come in weekly and do PICC dressings. What is everyones practice regarding how often PICC have to be flushed? daily? or weekly? or monthly? What concentration of heparin are you using? We are thinking about 3cc of 100u/ml heparin weekly. Has anyone tried this? and will it keep the lines open for our frequent flyers?
Mar 15, '01
Hi! In our institution we are also having a lot more PICC's put in these days. Our policy is daily flushes with 3cc of 100u/ml hepalean solution if the line is not in active use. This seems to work well. If the line is in use, we use the hepalean on a weekly basis I believe. Strict policy would say to use it daily however.
I don't know if weekly flushes would be sufficient and I suspect it wouldn't. PICC's can be moody (read: difficult to flush, draw bloods from) even when flushed daily. I would bet that weekly flushed lines would gradually become blocked.
Hope this helps!
Mar 15, '01
We use PICC lines quite a bit in my facility. Our protocol is to flush it daily with 3cc of 100u heparin. Of course if you are administering medication you use the SASH method and if drawing blood off of it you must flush with at least 10cc of NSS and then 3cc of 100u heparin. They tend to clog very easily.