Accessing Femoral Arteries Less than 3 mm in Diameter is Associated with Increased Incidence of Loss of Pulse Following Cardiac Catheterization in Infants

Tadphale S, Yohannan T, Kauffmann T, Maller V, Agrawal V, Lloyd H, Waller BR, Sathanandam S.Pediatr Cardiol. 2020 May 4. doi: 10.1007/s00246-020-02357-4. Online ahead of print.PMID: 32367307



To evaluate whether avoidance of a risk factor associated with loss of pulse (LOP) following femoral artery (FA) catheterization in infants identified from previous study, was associated with decreased incidence of LOP during a prospective evaluation. Since initiation of routine ultrasound guided femoral arterial access (UGFAA) for infants undergoing catheterization in Jan 2003-Dec 2011 (Period-1), our incidence of LOP had stayed steady. Prospective evaluation between Jan 2012-Dec 2014 (Period-2), identified FA-diameter < 3 mm as risk factor for LOP. Between Jan 2015-Dec 2018 (Period-3), an initiative to avoid UGFAA for FA-diameter < 3 mm was implemented to determine whether that led to a decreased incidence of LOP. FA-diameter was measured prior to USGFAA and ratio of outer diameter of arterial sheath to luminal diameter of cannulated artery (OD/AD ratio) was calculated during Periods-2 and 3. The incidence and risk factors for LOP were assessed during the three periods. FA-access rates dropped significantly during Period-3 (56.7% vs. 93.8% and 90.4% during Periods-1 and 2, respectively, p < 0.001). Incidence of LOP in Period-3 decreased to 2.7% compared to 12.5% (Period-1) and 17.4% (Period-2) (p < 0.001). By multivariate analysis, FA size < 3 mm and an OD/AD ratio > 40% were the only significant independent predictors for LOP (OR 6.48, 95% CI 2.3-11.42, p < 0.001 and OR 4.16, 95% CI 1.79-8.65, p < 0.01, respectively). Access of femoral artery < 3 mm and OD/AD ratio > 50% are associated with increased incidence of LOP. Avoidance of these factors may help decrease complications in infants undergoing cardiac catheterizations.