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Thrombosis after umbilical venous catheterisation: prospective study with serial ultrasound
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  • Published on:
    Thrombosis after umbilical venous catheterisation
    • Gerdina H Dubbink-Verheij, Paediatrician-neonatologist Leiden University Medical Center
    • Other Contributors:
      • Remco Visser, Paediatrician-neonatologist
      • Arno A.W. Roest, Paediatric Cardiologist
      • Cornelia H. van Ommen, Paediatric Haematologist
      • Arjan B. te Pas, Paediatrician-neonatologist
      • Enrico Lopriore, Paediatrician-neonatologist

    We kindly thank Da Lozzo et al. for their reaction to our paper. Indeed, many variables may be of influence on the incidence of thrombosis in our study group.
    The authors are correct that the incidence of necrotizing enterocolitis in our study group (12.5%, 5/40) is higher than expected based on literature. As shown by Battersby et al. comparing NEC incidences internationally is challenging (1). The incidence of NEC in our study group does not reflect the NEC incidence of last 15 years at our department (which was 3.7% (98/2626) in infants with a gestational age <32 weeks). Possibly, the higher incidence of NEC led to a higher incidence of thrombosis in our study. However, care should be taken when interpreting our results due to the small sample size (n=40).
    Da Lozzo et al. make a valuable point about the diameter of central venous catheters. Most (25/40) umbilical venous catheters (UVCs) used in our study-group were 4Fr Vygon catheters, single or double lumen, with an external diameter of 1.5 and 1.4 mm, respectively (strange enough double lumen is smaller than single lumen). In 3/40 infants 5Fr Vygon catheters (external diameter 1.7 mm) were used and in 10/40 infants 3.5Fr Vygon catheters (external diameter 1.16 mm). In 2/40 infants the size of the catheter was not registered. We found no association between the risk of thrombosis and the size of the catheter (p=0.59). However, as stated in the discussion of our paper, the sample size of our group is too...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.
  • Published on:
    Umbilical venous catheterisation and risk of thrombosis
    • Prisca Da Lozzo, MD, pediatric resident Department of Medicine, Surgery and Health Sciences, University of Trieste, Trieste, Italy
    • Other Contributors:
      • Cristina Bibalo, Neonatologist
      • Francesco Maria Risso, Neonatologist

    We appreciated the paper by Dubbink-Verheij et al. evaluating the incidence of thrombosis in newborns who underwent umbilical catheterization in comparison with a control group of infants without umbilical venous catheter (UVC). While the paper highlights specific issues about UVC-related thrombosis in NICU, regarding the sites, the time of onset and the outcomes of this condition, we suggest that some relevant variables have not been taken fully in account.
    Some of the comorbidity rates of the patients in the study group are not consistent with data from literature and might have had a role in the unusual high rate of thrombosis and poor outcome in the study group. The reported rates of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC; 12.5% in the study group, 10% in the total population of the study) is significantly higher compared with that of the Vermont Oxford Network (VON); VLBW infants between 2000 and 2009 based on the VON showed a NEC incidence of 4.6-6.1%. (1)
    The study reported 30 thrombotic episodes in defined locations but, remarkably, the type and the diameter of catheter utilized was not stated by the Authors. Neonates, and especially preterm neonates, have an unfavorable catheter-to-vessel diameter ratio, which is a recognized risk factor for the development of catheter-related thrombosis in CVCs. In a in vitro model Nifong and McDevitt (2) quantified the impact of the catheter to vein size ratio on fluid flow unraveling the mechanism by which risk of catheter-...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.