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  1. Ling, Qiying BSN
  2. Chen, Hong BSN
  3. Tang, Min BSN
  4. Qu, Yi MD, PhD
  5. Tang, Binzhi MD, PhD


The purpose of this study is to investigate the accuracy and safety of intracavitary electrocardiogram (IC-ECG) guidance for the localization of peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) in neonatal patients. A total of 160 neonatal patients were randomly assigned to receive either anthropometric measurement combined with IC-ECG guidance (n = 80) or conventional anatomical landmark guidance (n = 80) for PICC catheter tip positioning. The catheter tip position was confirmed by postinsertion radiograph and data were interpreted by independent radiologists. Subsequent catheter-related complications of neonates between 2 groups were also compared. The first-attempt target rate was 95.0% (95% confidence interval, 90.1%-99.9%) in IC-ECG-guided PICCs, significantly higher than 78.8% (95% confidence interval, 69.6%-87.9%) in the anatomical landmark guidance group (P < .05). In contrast, IC-ECG-guided PICCs provided a significantly lower overall incidence of the catheter-related complications (3.75%), compared with those guided by anatomical landmarks only (23.75%). Thus, combined use of anatomical landmark and IC-ECG guidance improved the first-attempt target rate of PICC placement and decreased catheter-related complications. These findings indicated a superior accuracy and safety of IC-ECG guidance to conventional anatomical landmark method in neonatal PICC practice.