Background Femoral vessel cannulation in neonates is more difficult and done when other forms of access are not available.
Aim The aim of this study was to analyse the usage pattern of Percutaneous femoral arterial and venous catheterisation in neonates in Level-3 NICU.
Methods A questionaire was send electronically to all the level-3 NICU in United Kingdom.
Results Forty level-3 NICU units responded to the survey. They were completed by 32 consultant neonatologist and 8 Neonatal grid trainees. 16 units are inserting the femoral lines. In 10 units they are inserted by neonatal consultants with specific training or experience in the procedure, in 8 units by the paediatric anaesthetist, in 5 units by the PICU consultants and in 1 unit by the paediatric surgeon. 8 units insert the line under ultrasound guidance. 2 units stated that they have weight and gestation restriction. One of the unit inserts the line above 1200 grams and other unit uses 1000 grams cut off limit. When looking into the reason for not using the lines, 20 units stated that they have no expertise in performing this procedure, 18 units stated about concerns of ischaemic injury to the leg and 12 units has concerns about risk of infection.
Conclusions Only 16/40 (40%) of level 3 NICUs use femoral vessel catheterisation. Concerns about risk of ischaemic injury to the legs and the absence of expertise in performing the procedure in neonates are the main factors that limit the more widespread use of this technique.
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