PICC line trial!

Just want to share something I’ve experienced with regard to my PICC line in my local clinic and see what you think.

After 7 months with my PICC line without any prob, one day in March was suddenly told they are changing some procedures with the line care - They are now changing the sticky bit which hold the line in its place and the vial bit at the end every week (sorry, don’t know the proper name for them, hope you know what I mean). All under the name of infection control! They also need to measure the length of the line that’s outside to make sure it’s not going in and out. All sounds very nice. But then I was told this is only at a “trial stage”.

The prob was when she did take my sticky bit out, a bit of skin came off with it and I was left with a tiny bit of bleeding. Was dealt with and no nasty consequences. But decided to opt out that bit - surely a broken skin is more likely to cause an infection than a slightly unclean sticky bit - well, they clean it anyway when they change the dressing. I didn’t even know they can be changed!

Surely, if it’s only a trail, anybody taking part should be asked for permission first anyway. Anybody heard about this trial? Surely my clinic won’t be the only one that has been selected. It is private, though. Anybody had heard about this on the NHS? Do you know those bits can be changed?


Sorry M1yu, I’ve only just got my line so I don’t know what to expect yet. I think the nurse did move the sticky bit on the day after it was put in, but am not sure. I’ll watch out on Tuesday this week!

During my last chemo I was also told that procedures were changing and they had new ends for the line. Mine is now blue. The bit that holds the line to my arm is still only changed every 3 weeks or so. Also they don’t use sterile gloves any more as the end is help with a sterile swab to clean it.
My line has always been measured, which is just as well as one day the District Nurse discovered that it had been sucked in to my arm by more than 5 cm. I had to go to oncology to had it pulled back in, and had another chest x-ray to check it was still in the right place.

I have a PICC line fitted and I get it flushed and dressing changed weekly. They change the Statlock holding it in place (wings that snap down)and the end then the dressing on top. I have always had this done and havent been tolds its a trial! The only thing on trial is the sterile stick they use to clean and as I get treated in one health authority and dressing changed by another they wont use it!

Hi tedoris,

Sounds like I’ve been neglected for 7 months and then they suddenly decided to look after me! LOL!