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  1. Bowers, Linda MSN, APRN, BC, OCN(R)
  2. Speroni, Karen Gabel PhD, RN
  3. Jones, LouAnn APRN, BC
  4. Atherton, Martin DrPH


In this prospective, randomized study of 102 subjects with single-lumen peripherally inserted central catheters with positive pressure Luer-activated devices, 2 flushing solution groups were compared for their effect on occlusion rates. Of the 50 subjects randomly assigned to the normal saline group, 3 (6%) experienced occlusions, all of whom were elderly women. There were no occlusions in the 52 subjects randomly assigned to the heparinized saline group. Although the occlusion rate findings were not statistically significant, the charges associated with replacing a PICC because of occlusion are economically relevant. The annualized savings attributable to heparinized saline use are $22,891.