Peripheral venous catheter fracture with embolism into the pulmonary artery
Peripheral vein catheterization is generally considered a harmless procedure. Venous catheter rupture associated with pulmonary embolism is an unlikely but potentially serious complication. We report a case of a peripheral venous catheter (PVC) fracture with pulmonary artery embolization in the left lower lobe treated successfully by a surgical approach. The positioning of a PVC is not always a harmless procedure. Every time there are difficulties in positioning or in removal of a catheter device, it should be carefully inspected to verify integrity. The advisability of removal of these small foreign bodies is debated; percutaneous retrieval is preferred, while surgery should be discussed case by case.