WILLIAM A. AGGER, M.D.; DENNIS G. MAKI, M.D., F.A.C.P.
To the editor: Heparin-lock needles are widely used for intravenous administration of antineoplastic drugs. Until the report by Ferguson and associates (1), no information was available on the safety of these devices. These investigators encountered no systemic infections with 221 heparin-locks in 78 patients, but most of their patients were not immunosuppressed. We report two cases of patients with leukemia in whom cellulitis and septicemia developed with infection derived from heparin-lock needles.
An 82-year-old man receiving chemotherapy for treatment of acute myelogenous leukemia was severely granulocytopenic (< 500/mm3). On the 15th hospital day he developed fever to 39.4 °C and complained
AGGER WA, MAKI DG. Septicemia from Heparin-Lock Needles. Ann Intern Med. 1977;86:657. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-86-5-657_1
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1977;86(5):657.
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