A Correlational Study to Compare Hospitalized Adults’ Peripheral Intravenous Catheter Complication Rates between those Indwelling > 96 Hours to those Indwelling 72 – 96 Hours.

  • Gloria Bailey Ascoli Martha Jefferson Hospital
  • Pamela B DeGuzman University of Virginia School of Nursing
  • Aletha Rowlands West Virginia University School of Nursing
Keywords: Peripheral intravenous catheter, phlebitis, dwell times infiltration, evidence-based practice, occlusion, intravenous complication.


Background and Objectives: Care of peripheral intravenous catheters (PIVs) is a major component of hospital nursing practice, yet little published evidence exists to help nurses determine the maximum time PIVs can remain indwelling to minimize the risk of complications. This study sought to determine if PIVs that remained in place for > 96 hours would have the same complication rate as those that remained in place for 72-96 hours.  Population: Hospitalized adults with a peripheral intravenous catheter indwelling at least 72 hours. Methods: A retrospective correlational design explored the relationship between complication rates with respect to these dwell times. Results: Of all charts reviewed, 490 met inclusion criteria, of which 110 were discontinued due to a complication. The most common complication was infiltration. The study found that there was no difference in complication rate between those PIVs dwelling for 72-96 hours and those for greater than 96 hours. Interpretation and conclusion: This research supports the current Infusion Nurses Society recommendation to remove PIVs based on clinical indication rather than standard interval.

Author Biographies

Gloria Bailey Ascoli, Martha Jefferson Hospital

Infusion Center


Pamela B DeGuzman, University of Virginia School of Nursing

Family, Community, & Mental Health Systems

Assistant Professor of Nursing

Aletha Rowlands, West Virginia University School of Nursing
Assistant Professor of Nursing


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