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How to unclog a peritoneal dialysis catheter

by drqkhan
peritoneal dialysis catheter

Malfunction of the peritoneal dialysis (PD) catheter is common after insertion, frequently delaying patient schooling for PD (1–3). Several factors can be answerable for malfunction, which include catheter apposition or migration, intraluminal obstruction (through fibrin strands or blood clots), and extra luminal obstruction (through mental wrapping or adhesions) (1).

After the failure of conservative measures (along with laxatives and an aggressive bowel ordinary) to repair catheter patency, stiff-twine manipulation under fluoroscopic guidance can be performed. This method is typically well-tolerated and safe and has been mentioned to provide appropriate quick-term outcomes (four–6).

Right here, we gift the case of a seventy one-yr-vintage guy with stop-degree renal failure because of polycystic kidney ailment, on Hemodialysis (HD) for approximately eight years earlier than present process kidney transplantation. He evolved allograft failure three years in a while and turned into referred for initiation of PD. the affected person underwent insertion of a spiral-tip, double-cuff, and swan-neck PD catheter below fluoroscopic guidance. The system became tolerated well, without headaches.

Right away after catheter insertion, successful inflow and outflow were carried out. However, after 3-week restoration duration, the influx was noted to be gradual, without a discharge viable. Moreover, an extensive amount of fibrin was stated in the catheter. Conservative measures, including laxatives and recurrent catheter flushed with heparin zed saline, were unsuccessful. Belly radiography verified that the tip of the PD catheter became correctly positioned within the mid-pelvis (discern 1).

No matter the proper position of the PD catheter, a decision was made to continue catheter manipulation beneath fluoroscopic steerage. The time interval from catheter insertion to manipulation changed to about one month. At the time of catheter manipulation, it was regarded that the PD catheter was encased in a fibrin sheath. Injected contrast was seen tracking retrograde alongside the catheter to the website online of spillage within the lower left quadrant (discern 1). A stiff guide wire was therefore used to control the catheter, displacing the catheter into the left parabolic gutter, with its tip near the splendid flexure. The PD catheter turned intact, and in this new position, loose injection and aspiration of fluid from the catheter, with unprecedented influx and outflow, turned into attained. Curiously, after the PD catheter was repositioned, the fibrin sheath from the catheter’s primary role remained in the pelvis (discern 2).


To our know-how, that is the second case document of PD catheter failure due to complete encasement of the catheter through a fibrin sheath. Razor et al. (7) pronounced a similar finding of primary catheter obstruction due to catheter encasement in a fibrin sheath. In our case, the influx became gradual. However, now not as compromised as outflow. This case contrasts with the sooner case, wherein inflow and outflow obstructions happened (7).

We hypothesize that, below the effect of the destructive pressure of outflow, the fibrin sheath become pulled closer to the external wall of the catheter, occluding the side ports and thus stopping dialysate outflow. However, influx becomes less tricky because the top of the catheter becomes patent nevertheless. In addition, dialysate inflow might push the fibrin sheath far from the catheter, permitting dialysate influx to rise (albeit more slowly) between the fibrin sheath’s inner wall and alongside the catheter’s outside surface.

This example also highlights the efficacy of fluoroscopic stiff-wire manipulation to restore PD catheter characteristics even in the absence of apposition of the PD catheter on belly radiography. Although catheter manipulation was also tried in the case reported by using razor et al. (7), the catheter was motionless, and manipulation became unsuccessful. It is tempting to invest that the degree of fibrosis, the thickness of the fibrin sheath coating the catheter, and the capability to extract the catheter from the fibrin sheath or disrupt the fibrin sheath are probably critical factors influencing the success of fluoroscopic manipulation.

Our affected person offered a tremendous degree of fibrin in the catheter soon after insertion. That finding can be a marker of a profibrotic state and predict the subsequent fibrin sheath formation development.


Fibrin sheaths are a commonplace prevalence amongst HD catheters and a common reason for catheter malfunction. By comparison, fibrin sheaths encasing PD catheters can be underappreciated and have to be considered in the differential prognosis of patients with PD catheter malfunction. Strategies to lessen fibrin sheath formation and improve HD catheter characteristics have been explored. The use of heparin locking answers and thrombolytic treatment options were proven to enhance HD catheter characteristics (8). No scientific statistics have proven any benefit of antithrombotic coated HD catheters (9). It has been nicely demonstrated that using heparin decreases fibrin formation in PD sufferers (10, eleven). The effect of prophylactic instillation of heparin on fibrin sheath formation shortly after PD catheter insertion has not been explored and can improve primary PD catheter feature but will require an additional prospective look.

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