Optimal placement of central venous catheters (CVC) is essential for accurate monitoring of central venous pressure (CVP) in major surgeries and ensuring long-term use of the catheter for managing the critically ill patient. Accidental subclavian artery catheterization is one of the most serious complications of the procedure. Radiography is commonly used to ensure optimal placement of CVC tip and rule out subclavian artery catheterization in the absence of Doppler ultrasound and a pressure transducer. We present a case of a haemodynamically unstable and hypoxaemic patient with mediastinal shift, in which the anaesthesiologist was in a dilemma about the arterial placement of the right subclavian CVC. The CVC crossing the midline due to mediastinal shift gave the false impression of it being placed in subclavian artery rather than the vein. Subsequently, it was proved to be correctly placed in the subclavian vein.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine