Ultrasound-Guided Placement of Central Venous Port Systems via the Right Internal Jugular Vein: Are Chest X-Ray and/or Fluoroscopy Needed to Confirm the Correct Placement of the Device?
A 56-year-old man who had undergone cardiac surgery suffered from cardiac tamponade after administration of contrast-medium through a central venous catheter. Pericardiotomy showed the catheter transversing the pericardial sac just beneath an unusual high reflection and then reentering the superior vena cava. Preventive practices including chest radiography, confirming free venous blood return and manometry may fail to detect catheter malposition in rare cases. Knowledge of potential pitfalls in using generally recommended safety practices and continuous vigilance are essential for the anesthesiologist and intensivist in avoiding potentially lethal hazards.