Tunneled central venous catheters used for the provision of hemodialysis are associated with excess morbidity and mortality. Catheter related exit site and blood stream infections are major risks of their use. Although catheter-avoidance is the best strategy to reduce infections and mortality in the hemodialysis population, the use of catheters remains unacceptably high. In this review, the existing clinical practice guidelines for the prevention of hemodialysis catheter associated infections are outlined, and a comprehensive evidenced-based summary of interventions is provided. This includes details about the use of topical antimicrobial ointments and dressings, intranasal ointment application, prophylactic use of antibiotic and non-antibiotic catheter lock solutions, and catheter hub devices for the prevention of catheter blood stream infections.
- vascular access
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