What if a PICC line doesn’t have a cap?
H is home from the hospital with a PICC line and I am infusing Meropenem every 8 hours for 6 weeks.
I was told by the company that provides the "medicine balls" of meropenem, that there is a national/worldwide? sortage on caps for the end of the line. This has horrified me. Until tonight, I have managed to get as many caps as I could possibly find, including some donations from our home health nurse. But as I knew would happen, tonight I am faced with no end cap after I finish with the antibiotic, flush with saline, and them with heparin.
Does this horrify you medical people as much as it is horrifying me?
The nurses that were helping with my husband‘s discharge from the hospital heard me speaking with the company that provides the medication. They said that, yes, there was a widespread shortage, and that it would be OK. A member of the IV team that placed the PICC line said that there was some sort of mechanism inside the end of the line that the saline and heparin engage and it withdraws so that the fluid can go in. And that when I remove the saline and heparin push, that part of the end of the PICC line "reseeds" into the end of the PICC line and prevents contamination.
(Sorry that explanation sucks, but I don’t speak "medical").
The home health nurse I am really trust has told me that it would be fine. I have asked her if I should rubber band an alcohol prep pad over the end of the line. Or maybe I could soak the used cap I took off, in some alcohol and then reuse it? Almost anything seems better than just leaving the cap off.
What do you all think? If I simply cannot get a hold of a cap each time every day, is there some way I should "rig" the end of that line so that it could be protected?
"Noone can make you feel inferior without your concent." Eleanor Roosevelt
I will not be vanquished. Rose Kennedy