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georgia kim
power flush on picc line

How are you?

my name is georgia kim. I need some help regarng power flush on PICC line.  I am looking for some article regarding power flush or pulsitile flush on PICC line.   We all know the pulsitle flush is working, as least I believe it is working, so is there anyone done any reserch on that.  Please could you help me where do I have to look for?   Thanks georgia kim

Power flush and pulsatile

Power flush and pulsatile flush are 2 different techniques and purposes, especially when you mentioned PICCs. A power flush is what is done to reposition a PICC that has traveled up the jugular vein - patient sits up, 10-20 mL saline vigorously flushed to move the PICC back to the SVC. Pulsatile or turbulent flush technique is the stop-start method or push-pause method that many people use to create turbulence inside the catheter lumen on the hope that it will "clean" the catheter walls of anything stuck to it. There is no scientific studies or actual research of any kind to support this practice. There are opinion pieces and how to pieces but no science. So we do not know the true outcomes from this practice. Fibrin and biofilm adheres so firmly to the catheter walls so I have serious doubts about this technique actually removing any of that. If it did remove it, it could lead to CRBSI. It is the breakage of biofllm in clusters or clumps or individual cells that leads to its floating into the bloodstream and producing BSI. Also the  forceful injection of saline causes  any microorganisms to attach more firmly and produce a biofilm with a greater tensile strength or a stronger biofilm. This pulsatile flushing may be effective at immediate removal of whole blood directly after you have aspirated then flushed, however there is no evidence that it will remove what is attached to the catheter walls, nor that this is a desireable goal. 


Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., RN, BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., NPD-BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257


Office Phone 770-358-7861

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