Mastectomy and Vascular Access

Mastectomy for Breast Cancer and Vascular Access for a patient who had a Mastectomy requires the Clinician to evaluate additional facts and data. This page describes important factors for the Vascular Access Clinician to consider to reduce Lymphedema and Infection risk that could arise from PICCs and Midlines.

Mastectomy

Mastectomy is the surgery to remove all breast tissue from one or both breasts and is typically done as an option to address breast cancer such as to treat breast cancer or to prevent breast cancer.  In addition to typical surgical side effects of infection and the build up of blood or fluid in the wound, swelling in the arms and arm pit area can occur when lymph nodes are removed.  This is referred to as Lymphedema and it can strike after the removal of lymph nodes either immediately after the Mastectomy or many years later.  Lymphedema can lead to serious bacterial infections and any injury to a patient’s arm or leg can create the opportunity for an infection to infiltrate.

Mastectomy Breast Cancer Lymph Node Dissection

Mastectomy Breast Cancer Lymph Node Dissection

Small Bore Internal Jugular Central Venous Line

Small Bore Internal Jugular Line avoids Lymphedema and Infection risk in the affected Arm or Arm Pit Area

Mastectomy and Vascular Access

Mastectomy and Vascular Access for a Mastectomy patient requires additional skill, care, and consideration.  Following the Infusion Nurse Society and Association for Vascular Access guidelines, Vascular Access clinicians should not create Vascular Access in, at, or near the affected arm or arm pit area in patients that have suffered breast cancer and lymph node dissection (ie, the removal of the lymph nodes), as this can cause Lymphedema and Infection.  As such, Vascular Access should not be created by the PICC or Midline procedure.  Small Bore Internal Jugular Central Venous Catheter Line is the solution, with a Small Bore Femoral Central Venous Line as an additional alternative.  These central catheter lines avoid the arm and arm pit, mitigating the risk of Lymphedema and Infection.  Small Bore Axillary Central Venous Line is not an option as the chest wall has been removed or manipulated, and this procedure is too close to the chest, upper arm and arm pit area.  When Vascular Access has been mismanaged, Lymphedema has been known to strike more than 10 years after a Mastectomy which, absent other facts, leads to the conclusion that small bore lines are generally safer for Vascular Access for Mastectomy Patients than PICCs and Midlines.

Small Bore Femoral Central Venous Line

Small Bore Internal Femoral Line avoids Lymphedema and Infection risk in the affected Arm or Arm Pit Area

Vascular Wellness – Safe Vascular Access for Mastectomy Patients

Vascular Wellness provides Safe Vascular Access for Mastectomy Patients including those with lymph node removal.  Vascular Wellness has the experience and expertise to place small bore central catheter lines at similar very high success rates and zero insertion related infections as we do with PICCs.  In fact, Vascular Wellness has placed over 15,000 Small Bore Internal Jugular Central Venous Catheter Lines with no insertion related infections.  Small Bore Central Venous Lines allow patients to travel across any care setting including in the privacy of their home.  Vascular Wellness will not perform a PICC or Midline without a documented medical order from the Surgical Oncologist or other appropriate medical doctor.  Placing different small bore lines at the bedside are just some of the many ways in which Vascular Wellness provides a superior, comprehensive Vascular Access Solution.  We have tools and training to provide the right Vascular Access at the Right Time, the First Time.

Vascular Wellness supports and protects breast cancer survivors

Vascular Wellness supports and protects breast cancer survivors with quality, timely, and safe vascular access

Need More than a PICC Service?

We offer timely, innovative, and advanced vascular access services at the bedside, with full administrative support, from skilled employees who care.

Want more than just a PICC Service or PICC Team?
Email us below or call 877-284-4435.
We are Vascular Access Specialists and here to help and answer your questions.

Let us be part of your trusted Healthcare Team.

Vascular Wellnesssm provides clinical vascular access nursing services at the bedside across the Southeast to a diverse client base including Tertiary Hospitals, Community Hospitals, Long Term Acute Care Hospitals, Skilled Nursing Facilities, Surgical and Outpatient Centers,  Hospice, and At-Home care.

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