Imaging Approach to Misplaced Central Venous Catheters

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Central venous catheters (CVCs) are commonly used in patients in a variety of clinical settings, including the intensive care unit, general ward, and outpatient settings. After placement, the radiologist is frequently requested to evaluate the location of CVCs and deem them suitable for use. An understanding of the ideal location of catheter tips as well as the approach to identifying malpositioned catheter tips is essential to prevent improper use, recognize and/or prevent further injury, and direct potential lifesaving care. An approach to CVC placement based on tip location can be helpful in localization and guiding management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-117
Number of pages13
JournalRadiologic Clinics of North America
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2020


  • Cavoatrial junction
  • Central venous catheters
  • Extravascular catheters
  • Intra-arterial catheters
  • Left-sided venous catheters
  • Malpositioned catheters
  • Right-sided venous catheters


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