BACKGROUND: Umbilical venous catheters (UVC) and peripherally inserted central catheters (PICC) are commonly used in preterms. UVC is cheap, easy to insert but has shorter dwell time. UVC is replaced after 7 days due to the risk of complications. This is associated with increased cost, work, and risk of nosocomial infections. The aim of this study was to determine the antenatal and postnatal factors that predict the need for a central line for more than 7 days, thus helping select between UVC or PICC on day 1 of life in babies ≤1500 grams.
METHODS: We retrospectively collected antenatal and postnatal data of VLBW neonates over a period of 1 year who needed CL during their NICU stay. We then divided them into two cohorts. Group 1: CL ≤7 days. Group 2: CL > 7 days.
RESULTS: Sepsis and catheter complications were lower with use of a single CL or duration being ≤7 days. Birth weight, incomplete/no antenatal steroids, need for resuscitation, low Apgar’s, RDS, hs-PDA, and initiation of feeds beyond 24 hours of birth were significant. The score was devised based on factors found significant that had an acceptable AUC of 0.767 on ROC analysis with a score of 1 or above having 74.8% sensitivity and 67.7% specificity for prediction of need for CL > 7 days.
CONCLUSIONS: Birth weight ≤1000 grams, incomplete steroids and need for resuscitation at birth to be predictive of the need of CL beyond seven days on day one of life.