The role of antibiotics in preventing totally implantable venous access device (TIVAD) infections; is there a population that would benefit?


      • Prophylactic antibiotics for TIVAD placement and TIVAD infections were evaluated.
      • Prophylactic antibiotics did not reduce TIVAD infection rate.
      • Infections were associated with inpatient placement.
      • Routine use of prophylactic antibiotics with TIVAD placement should be avoided.



      To assess the role for prophylactic antibiotics in preventing totally implantable venous access device (TIVAD) infections and identify populations that may benefit from antibiotics.


      1284 patients undergoing TIVAD placement were retrospectively reviewed to determine association between infection rate, prophylactic antibiotics, and clinical data including white blood cell (WBC) count, platelets, and coagulation profile. Patients were further sub-categorized based on hospital admission status and leukopenia. Patients who received antibiotics were compared to those who did not using chi-square test or Fisher's exact tests and Student's t-tests. Additionally, multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to determine factors associated with infections.


      A total of 7 infections were identified with an infection rate of 0.5%. 1010 patients received antibiotics (78.7%), and infection rate in these patients was 0.7% compared to 0% in patients who did not receive antibiotics. 21 patients were under the age of 18, eight of which received antibiotics. No infections occurred in the pediatric group. Upon multivariate analysis, developing TIVAD infection was significantly associated with inpatient placement (p < 0.0001, OR 29.1, 95% CI 3.1–272.1), while utilization of double lumen ports was not (OR 3.0, 95% CI 0.5–17.4). There were no significant associations between infections and antibiotic use (p = 0.36), leukopenia (p = 0.47), pediatric patients (p = 1) or other demographic or laboratory data.


      Routine use of prophylactic antibiotics with TIVAD placement should be avoided. Antibiotics may not benefit even those with greater risk for infection.


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