SAN ANTONIO, Tex.–A central venous catheter self-management education program (CVC S-MEP) is an effective nursing intervention to promote long-term self-management of a CVC for discharged patients with cancer, according to a study presented at the ONS 41st Annual Congress.1

“At home, cancer patients with CVCs can be exposed to unexpected issues that require immediate assistance,” said Jeong Yun Park, PhD, RN, APN, of the University of Ulsan in Seoul, South Korea. “A lack of proper CVC management can lead to several complications, such as infection, occlusion, and catheter damage.”

Such complications delay treatment, prolong hospitalization, increase health care costs, and increase mortality rates. Therefore, effective strategies for the prevention and early detection of CVC complications are needed for patients receiving home care.

Continue Reading

To promote patients’ ability to solve CVC-related problems and cultivate self-management skills, Park and her colleagues developed and implemented a CVC S-MEP.

“The program lasts for around 3 weeks on average and consists of four 50-minute face-to-face sessions,” Park explained. “We used a combination of didactic methods, including a short lecture and group discussion.”

In addition, instructors demonstrated dressing the CVC site and the procedure of using heparin solution to flush the CVC. Participants repeatedly practiced aseptic technique and the use of the products to familiarize themselves with the tasks. Patients were taught how to seal the CVC while taking a shower and instructors shared cases of CVC-related complications.

Patients were also encouraged to express their fears and anxieties, as well as their everyday experiences regarding CVC self-management.

Results show that the CVC S-MEP helped to improve patients’ ability resolve CVC-related problems and adequately respond to CVC-related emergencies.

“From this data, the proposed CVC S-MEP appears to be an effective program for increasing self-management knowledge, attitude, and compliance,” Park concluded. “It was also effective in the prevention of catheter-related complications.”


1. Park JY, Kim HL, Shin SJ. Development and evaluation of central venous catheter self-management education program for cancer patients. Oral presentation at: 2016 Oncology Nursing Society Annual Congress; April 28-May 1, 2016; San Antonio, TX.