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British Lung Foundation
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PICC line for eradication of pseudomonas.

Has anyone had a PICC line in to take iv antibiotics? I ask because l am at present in hospital trying to eradicate pseudomonas. I am being offered this so that l can be at home and visit my local hospital for infusions 3 times a day for between 2 and 3 weeks. Seems a lot but risk of further infections could be higher in hospital. Any advice please?

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I have never had a picc. Whenever I do my own IVs at home I have a longline put in using ultrasound. I don’t have infusions but fill syrynges ie flushes, antibiotic, flush, heparin. I have a cf nurse comes in once half way through and weighs, takes blood, check all is ok, and takes a sample. At the end I go to the cf unit and have all the checks again and see a consultant.

I have friends who have piccs put in for home IVs.

Much better to be at home if you feel comfortable with it.

Good luck and get well soon.

Cx

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Thank you. Only have to be in hospital as l have a heart condition and the cardiologist says no to oral Cipro. Not looking forward to it and will have to almost spend my days in hospital but sleep at home . I am sure l could not do as you did. Well done. Oh and this line is put-in via ultrasound too.

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Forgot to say l have bronchiectasis.

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Awe that’s a shame but at least you will get some peace and quiet at night at home in your cosy bed. I have BE too and cannot tolerate Cipro. The friends I know cope with the picc insertion very well and hopefully some of them will be along soon.

Good luck with the picc and IVs and I hope you feel better soon.

Cx

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Thank you so much. I am scared but l will manage. All the best to you.

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I have been in hospital several times over the past few months and had nurses come out to my house several times to give me iv antibiotics for this pseudo and I have had no luck getting rid of it. I've had it 4 years now so you may have better luck than me. I will be having a picc line fitted soon because I'm on iv antibiotics every 4-6 weeks so it's a long term problem but up till now I just had a longline and it's been fine.

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Hope the picc will be better for you,

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What a pain Mandy!

I was told after 6month with it, you can be stuck with it....(See one of my other comments)

I seem to be free of it nowadays.... must have had it 6 or 7 years....

Don't give up hope!

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Thank you Janice. In hospital now. Had picc fitted on Monday and unfortunately on this ward no one knew how to deal with it. A senior nurse came to give me the ab at about 11pm but did not return to flush it. I was left to sleep in it and the following day a nurse trained to flush it etc. quickly discovered it was blocked. The nurse tried really hard to free it but no luck. The consultant came and there was blood in it so it had to be removed. Back to cannula. He was concerned about infection and blood clots. This ward is a winter pressure ward which closes soon. Nurses coming from everywhere. Could go on. Needless to say l feel worse after 9 days than l did when admitted. Saving grace is l am in a single room. Hope l stay here till released tomorrow.

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Hi Mandy

I have not seen any posting of yours for quite awhile now and was wondering how you are? Did you have the transplant yet? I hope all is well with you.

Best wishes, Patches

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Hi. No I haven't had my transplant but you will all know when I get it because I've told my daughter she must post it. I'm struggling with constant infection that only iv antibiotics work on now and my bronchiectasis causes me problems. Having said that I'm doing OK at the moment I was in hospital 2 weeks ago and had a course of hardcore antibiotics and I don't have an infection so I'm getting stronger each day. Hope you and yours are well x

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A picc line is much better than longline, especially for home IVs, as there’s less chance of it getting inflamed or infected, so if your treatment is to last several weeks, it’s less likely to cause problems. It’s inserted deeper in the body, so requires more skill & takes a bit longer. Mine have been done in a mini-theatre under strictly sterile conditions but perfectly straightforward.

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Thank you Hanne. That’s reassuring.

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Hey Liberty43. I have bronchiectasis too and had a horrid year of constant admissions for pseudomonas. I ended up having to have a portacath because my poor veins were just shutting down with the amount of iv’s I was needing. Portacath also meant I had the freedom to do my own meds at home, and only had to return to the hospital every few days during the treatment. Never had a picc, but it was certainly one of the suggestions at the time, and lots of patients in the day medicine unit seemed to have them for iv’s.

Hope you start to feel better soon and kick the pseudomonas’ butt! It’s a horrid bug!!

X

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Thank you . This is the first time this bug has appeared for me so that is why they are trying to eradicate it. Not feeling ill with it either as do with others.

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Hi reading this thread with interest. Had bronchiectasis since a teenager now 52. Colonised with pseudomonas. Had 4 episodes of haemoptysis in last 3 years so on oral ciprofloxacin when that happens. Take azithromycin now 3 times a week. But next course in in get an infection is Iv antibiotics. All very worrying.

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Yes it is. I have managed myself well for about 20 years when the ct scan confirmed bronchiectasis. I have a heart problem which means l am unable to take the only oral antibiotic available. I am now in a position that if l get an infection going forward it will mean iv again. Problem this time is that l did not recognise the signs of an infection and the need for sputum sample. When l finally realised l had an infection this is the result. Problem is that Cipro can cause a prolonged qt and l already have that plus a left bundle branch block. The cardiologist said l cannot take it so that’s it now. Like you, l am dreading further problems. I am almost 75 now and still enjoy life as many people in their seventies do. Lots of help on here Paula. I prefer to come here as GPs have little knowledge usually referring to it as COPD. I have found a respiratory consultant who specialises in bronchiectasis but they are a rare breed.

Good Luck going forward. Keep strong.x

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You are lucky. I spent 2 weeks in hospital with Pseudamonas on IV. I felt good at the time so it was quite unnecessary to actually stay in hospital. I would have much preferred a pic....Norm

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I agree. Are you colonised? How did you get on after the 2 weeks iv? Unsure when the picc line will go in . Hope it’s soon. Taking up a bed when other things can be done is silly,

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Over the years I have had five or six Picc lines so that I can do home IV’s. Eventually it became too difficult and the hospital decided to put in a Pothocath. I find that brilliant and much easier than a Picc. I always do my IV’s at home, no risk of cross infection as an inpatient. I HATE being in hospital and having contracted MRSA in the past it is hardly surprising. It is not rocket science doing IV’s at home but be aware you will feel tired so make allowances and get lots of rest.

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Thank you for that good advice. I hope that if l do get another infection l will be able to do the same. The risk of further infections is a worry, especially in hospital. I also hate being in hospital and it comes as a shock after having managed all my illnesses very well by myself.

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I have had a PICC line. It is less painful than a cannula, and less likely to become infected. Many cancer patients have them (their chemo can take 6 months) . I had one while in hospital for IV treatment for Pseudomonas plus Pneumonia. A doctor or qualified nurse can also take blood tests trough them.

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Hi Liberty, was admitted to Royal Brompton for the same condition in 2004. Had the pseudomas over a year and local hospital not up to scratch...

10 days intravenous antibiotics didn't clear it an went home on longterm inhaled antibiotics.

However over the years have had several false 'clear' results but now its several years since lve had a positive result and it seems it has gone....

Always have sputum sample tested at Royal Brompton when a chest infection starts up....

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Just found your post. Very similar to me. I too am leaving to inhaled antibiotics but not long term l hope. What a state we are in. Nurses are not trained to put cannula in. Suppose that is a job contracted out! The future doesn’t look good does it?

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It may not be looking good for the NHS but with the pseudo gone, lm feeling positive...

Havnt had inhaled antibiotics for over 10yrs now, although l do get some weird and wonderful infections, not much deterioration in 13 or so years!

It helps that lm under Royal Brompton, asked for private referral in 2004 and they switched me back to NHS after initial contact. Dedicated clinical nurse available and if emergency, registra on bleep.

And if lm in trouble it's made clear that it's ok to call them....

Hope you soon get some positive news but in the mean time chin up, us girls are made of tough stuff!

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Thanks for your post Janice. True, we are. I am usually positive just a shock to find that in some respects have lost control. Always looked after myself it’s just that l will be hospitalised if pseudomonas decides to give me another infection l will soon be back to normal when l leave hospital tomorrow. Will be late tomorrow as my last iv is at10pm. The nurses will aim to help by giving my first iv before 6 in the morning. Glad you have such a good team but l moved 2 years ago and lost all my support then. I feel sure that things will be fine as in spite of errors l cannot fault the care given by all the staff on this overstretched ward.

Thanks for replying and hope your health care continues to be good. X

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I'm wishing you the very best of luck Liberty43!

Hope all goes well tomorrow, will be thinking of you...

Come the spring and the better weather, when you're feeling bit better, try building up your support circle again.... lm not sure of your age but if 55+ the U3A is a good place to start.... lots of interests so you can choose what' best for you...

If under that approximate age try women's' groups, they will be on internet or libraries or local news papers.... Also the parish magazine or local church may have info on what's around in your area...

Good luck and keep in touch...

Janice

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Thank you Janice l will. I am a young 74 will be 75 in June. I will join U3A. I was going to join last year but was still looking after my grandson during school holidays and after school. He is now at secondary school so l don’t see him much at all. I have joined a dancing for health group at our local hospice and l really enjoy it. It’s not only the dancing, it’s the people you meet there. I hope to be going back there soon. It’s not too strenuous but very enjoyable.

Thanks again Janice. Let you know how l get on when l get home. X

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I also have psedomonas. Was that the reason you were admitted to hospital??? When they find psedomonas they start with ciprofloxacin for 2 weeks, then a nebilizer for 2-3 months....if still in sputum, then an iV med for 3 weeks..

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