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History of PICC's

Hi everyone--

We just started up an AVA network -WISVAN- here in Wisconsin!!

We are looking to do a little PR work and I am wondering if any of you have or could refer me to a history of how PICC's evolved.


Congratulations on your new

Congratulations on your new network. Since I was around at the beginning of PICC use, and learned from the original PICC nurse, I can tell you how it all began. There had been some studies from the 1940's about using veins in the arm for accessing the central system but the outcomes were not that great. In the mid-70's there were a couple of studies by physicians on using catheters placed peripherally for parenteral nutrition and for oncology patients. The first catheter commercially designed and sold for this purpose was Intrasil by a small division of Baxter known as Vicra. This company gave a large grant to MD Anderson to create a team of nurses who would insert these lines. This team was started and managed for many years by Millie Lawson, RN. She authored the first study reporting on nurses doing this procedure:

1.    Lawson M, Bottino JC, McCredie KB. Long term I.V. therapy:  A new  approach. American Journal of Nursing. 1979;79(6):110-103.

Marcia Wise, RN now with BD Medical worked on this team along with many of the current team members from MD Anderson.

From this beginning, Millie educated and trained IV nurses in several cities on PICC insertion. I was fortunate to be in Atlanta on an IV team starting to insert PICCs in 1980 and 81. There were IV nurses in Kansas City, Dallas, Seattle and a few other cities beginning the same process at that time. 

Another catheter - Per-Q-Cath was designed for use in neonates and peds with the first studies being published in the early 1980's. And many think it began with this population.

Several years ago at a NAVAN conference, Dr. Bob Hickman (the original designer of the Hickman catheter) honored Millie Lawson by calling her the mother of vascular access. She is the one to be credited with starting what we do today. Lynn 

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

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

126 Main Street, PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257


Office Phone 770-358-7861

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