The purpose of this study is to learn how the use of ultrasound helps with the placement of
an intravenous (i.v.) catheter in young children.
In an academic pediatric Emergency Depratment (ED), we performed a randomized clinical trial
of children < 7 years of age, who required i.v. access and who had failed the first i.v.
attempt. We randomized patients to either continued standard i.v. attempts or
ultrasound-assisted attempts. Clinicians involved in the study received one hour of training
in ultrasound localization of peripheral veins. In the ultrasound group, vein localization
was performed by an ED physician who marked the skin overlying the target vessel.
Intravenous cannulation attempts were then immediately performed by a pediatric ED nurse who
relied on the skin mark for vessel location. We allowed for technique cross-over after two
failed i.v. attempts. We recorded success rate and location of access attempts.
- Less than 7 years of age
- Emergency Department patients
- Parents available for consent
- Critical illness