A peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) is a long, thin, flexible tube (catheter) that is placed into one of the large veins of your arm, above the bend of your elbow. Some PICCs divide into 2 or 3 different lines allowing you to receive different treatments at the same time. PICC lines can stay in place within your vein for days or weeks depending on your individual venous access needs.
When you come in to discuss a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC), your doctor will look at your medical history and may perform diagnostic testing. The risks and benefits of vascular access should be matched to the medical needs and condition of each individual patient. For certain patients, PICC lines are the safest method to deliver infusion therapy.
A PICC can be used for many types of IV treatments or to obtain blood for laboratory testing. This is more comfortable compared to the many needle sticks that would have been needed for giving medications and drawing blood. The goal of the procedure is to spare your veins from these frequent needle sticks.
A PICC can also spare your veins and blood vessels from the irritating effects of IV medications and can be used at home.
The PICC insertion is either done in the radiology department or at your hospital bedside. Your doctor or nurse will use ultrasound to identify and locate the veins in your upper arm. To prevent infection, your arm will be scrubbed and covered with a sterile drape. A local anesthetic will numb the area where the PICC is to be placed. The catheter will be inserted into a vein just above the bend of your elbow and the tip will be guided into your superior vena cava (SVC), a large vein in your chest.
Once the PICC line is in place, it is secured to your arm with tape and covered wit a sterile dressing. A chest x-ray is taken afterwards to verify that the tip of the PICC is in the proper location.
PICC line placement is usually performed as an outpatient procedure and lasts less than an hour. Afterwards, you will rest in a recovery area for a short while before being sent home. Most patients are able to return to normal activities the next day.
As with any procedure there are risks associated with placing a PICC line:
Again, there are many options for patients requiring long term vascular access. Your physician will help you decide which is right for you. Call IVC today at 503-612-0498 for more information.
This is for Dr. Pfister. I just wanted to thank him for all the time he spent with us the other week. In all the years I’ve had my vascular problems I’ve never had a doctor really sit down and explain to me the intricacies of what might be going on. I have a lot to think about…but just wanted to say thanks for being so nice and answering our many questions!L.H.
A fantastic group of wonderful people. The procedure was very smooth. When they were putting the port in I felt like I was getting a great massage!! Thank you all!S.C.
Charley was instrumental in getting me scheduled in quickly to get my PICC line removed. She actually worked until late in the day to get the information from my referring doctor’s office. It is nice to know great people like Charley still exist in this world!K.S.
I had my blood clot filter removed on 2/21/18. I was very apprehensive, yet EVERYONE in Dr. Pfister’s office and surgical team helped to make me comfortable. I am extremely claustrophobic so laying down or having something covering my face creates anxiety. Mary Anne listened to my concerns and made sure I was made comfortable and did not feel anxious. The surgical team was amazing, they explained everything thoroughly. Dr. Pfister came in after the procedure to review what he did and discuss any follow up that might be required. I so appreciate the time and attention he gives me as his patient. This was a positive experience.G.H.
110% Thank You! Best unit so far in my cancer treatment. Thanks Dr. LoveAnonymous
If you ever need an Interventional Radiologist for a child I realize it is serious business. I’ve seen Dr. Love go and save a child’s kidney without missing a beat. I could recommend no one better for myself, or for people I love. I think he is a little cool at the bedside, but that’s OK Dr. Love, stay frosty! If you can’t see Dr. Love, one of the other professionals at IVC will be able to help you. Ashley, the dynamite scheduler and one of the other surgeons at IVC will care for you. I’ve had multiple surgeries with this practice over the past several years. Never a hiccup!S. R. – Portland, OR
Great experience, doctor was thorough in explaining what was going to happen. The nurses were very attentive and made sure I was comfortable and my needs were met. I would recommend this office for any related procedure.Anonymous
Everything went very smoothly. Joe enjoyed the music. Very friendly staff! Good Experience!J. & E.
All staff was courteous and efficient. Good experience.J. J.
Dr. Pfister, thanks so much for your excellent care, removing my chemo port earlier this week. With all your experience and your fine touch, I’m confident the scar will be nearly invisible. Your team, from beginning to end, did a super job with me. Please extend my gratitude to Jennifer, Mary Anne, Todd and Charley. I’ve got a whole lot of living left to do. I appreciate all of you helping me do it!M. F.
Dr. Pfister, thank you for all of the attention you gave to me. I learned lots from our discussion – hearing you speak of ultimate healing was enough to encourage me to do all I can to strengthen those muscles.S. O.
The entire office is one of the most professional, helpful and informative medical offices I have dealt with (and I have dealt with many). Kudos to Jennifer, Henry, and Charley!K. C.
Great people. Great place. Good surgery.G. G.
Patty, Mary Anne and the whole staff was amazing! Best experience I’ve had since being diagnosed with cancer. From start to finish, was great. Thanks.M
My brother came into Legacy Meridian Park, had a stroke. Dr. Bauer came in immediately, in his work jeans and shirt. He worked with Neurologist Dr. Burbank, developed a plan and took my brother into a procedure where they removed the clot from his head! Very down to earth doctor, explained procedure to family, worked with sense of urgency.J. P.
I want to comment regarding Dr. Bauer of how he was thorough explaining my CT Biopsy and showing me how on the computer he would get the tissue needed. In all the years of several surgeries I have never felt better going in to have a procedure done. His bedside manner was incredible. I wish all doctors were like Dr. Bauer. Thank you for preparing and relaxing me prior to the biopsy.R.S. Molalla OR
Everyone did a superb job taking care of me and doing the procedure. Thank You AllK.S.
Dr. Bauer genuinely cares about his patients and strives to make sure they understand every aspect of their treatment.A. L.
Dr. Bauer, our family wants you to know how thankful we are to you for saving G.P.’s life and bringing him back to us in normal health. Thank you over and over you are the best!Family of G. P.