BACKGROUND: Premature infants often require long-term indwelling intravascular catheters. Occasionally, catheters fracture and migrate into cardiovascular structures, risking perforation, infection, thrombosis, and interference with cardiac and valve function. This case series describes our experience with percutaneous retrieval of broken intravascular catheters.
METHODS: A gooseneck micro-snare was used to retrieve fractured catheters in four premature infants, weighing between 840 and 1930 grams.
RESULTS: All procedures were successful without complications.
CONCLUSIONS: Gooseneck-snare retrieval of broken indwelling intravascular catheters can be performed safely and successfully in premature infants even those that weigh less than 1000 grams.