This is topic IV Line Supervision in forum Medical Questions at LymeNet Flash.

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Posted by farraday (Member # 21494) on :
Who keeps an eye on your IV line for Rocephan?
We live in rural area, far from our LLMD in SF.
I am improving on my IVs but my last line site may be infected. My son cares for it meticulously , but he feels that a nurse should see it at least monthly.

We are looking for a visiting nurse. I have no PCP because the ones near me have no idea about lyme disease and are afraid to touch me. A nurse did come to show us how to manage it, but that was all and we can't find him.

I will probably go to SF to see the surgeon who installed it. But we need a regular nurse. I am on Medicare so I don't know if they will cover it.

The good news is that after 24 years of this misery I am finally beginning my path to recovery! The Rocephan is definitely working.
Posted by beaches (Member # 38251) on :
You should google nursing services/nursing agencies in your area and start calling.

Odds are Medicare will not cover the visit, so it will be out of pocket.

IMO, a picc needs to be seen by a nurse more than once a month but that's me.

And again, IMO, a picc should be removed/replaced after several months, at the latest.

Great news that the rocephin is making a difference. Sometimes it takes many months.
Posted by Razzle (Member # 30398) on :
A well-cared-for PICC can last more than a year (personal experience, discussion w/ local PICC-experienced doctors).

However, weekly evaluations of the site and arm are required. This is usually done by a nurse from a home infusion service (there are many - the one I use is Coram, but there are others depending on where you live).
Posted by beaches (Member # 38251) on :
Razzle, Coram wouldn't provide a nurse for us. I guess it depends on what state you live in. It was a bit bizarre that I had to find my own nursing agency to provide the picc care.

But it's a great idea for farraday to check with Coram in CA if that's the infusion company.

I know piccs can last more than a year. I've always been uncomfortable with those things being in more than 7-8 months, eventhough there were no problems. Interventional radiologist I've dealt with said no more than 6 months, but that's probably erring on the side of caution.
Posted by Razzle (Member # 30398) on :
First PICC I had, they didn't tell me anything about life-expectancy of the PICC, and I didn't know to ask. Thankfully, I only needed it for a month.

Second PICC I had, they told me it should be swapped out every 6 months.

My current PICC - lasted a year and 3 months before the line clips stopped working and I needed to get it replaced.

When I went in to Interventional Radiology for the replacement, they told me my line looked like it'd been placed yesterday even though it'd been in for 15 months. I expect this line to last a similar length of time...

My DH does my dressing changes this time around, and he's meticulous and very, very careful. I don't have any irritation, redness, or other problems at the site like what I had trouble with on my second PICC (2008-2011) when the nurse was doing the dressing changes (she was sloppy & had poor technique).

As for finding a local home infusion service, try searching by zip code here:
Posted by farraday (Member # 21494) on :
Thanks everybody! Good input. My line is not a pic. It is a central line in my chest. I had a port last 6 yrs (for IV pain meds). I've had 3 lines.

We called surgeon. He said to scrub at least 2x daily with peroxide, rebandage with neosporine. Shower and wash it. If it's still infected in 3 days, go see him.

Nursing agy said to get Dr referral and then they will come.

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