A peripherally inserted central catheter or PICC line refers to a type of central intravenous line, which is used for long-term drug administration, an alternate route to provide nutrition or accessible route for patients needing frequent blood draws.
Having a PICC line may impede your normal daily life, and one important priority is to avoid infection. One way to avoid problems and complications associated with having a PICC line is by using a waterproof PICC line protector.
In this post, you’ll learn the important benefits of using a PICC line protector, to help you make an informed choice when availing one.
Any penetration or disruption of skin integrity will pose you at risk for infection. Because a PICC line is an open line where healthcare practitioners can introduce substances and withdraw blood, it’s important to keep the site protected using a PICC line protector to avoid infection.
PICC covers and PICC line protectors have the same function. They keep the area clean and free from a substantial number of bacteria that may cause infection. A PICC line protector or cover can be made from plastic, cotton, or elastic.
Help Secure the PICC Line
A PICC line protector that is well-applied would help secure the catheter site. In that way, the risk for infection is reduced and helps avoid disrupting the function of the PICC line. Ask the help of your caregiver or home health nurse if you have problems with the dressing and the PICC line, or if you feel feverish or experiences chills, as these are signs of infection, which would require prompt medical attention.
Generally, most patients with PICC lines would need post-acute medical care. In that way, they are better assisted with dressing changes and other daily activities. Using a PICC line protector, patients with peripheral catheters can move with ease and convenience because they know that their lines are protected from water contact and harmful substances and microorganisms that may cause infection.
Modern PICC wraps are easy to use, allowing patients to take a shower and resume some of the normal daily activities without too much stress and hassle. Undergoing a medical procedure can be painful and very inconvenient, and somehow, using a PICC line protector will make things a little easier for patients because it keeps the site secure and waterproof.
More Control In Keeping the Area Dry
More than anything else, every patient wants to be independent as much as possible because it’s one way to bring back their self-esteem and motivation to go back to their normal lives. However, having a PICC line can be a huge impediment towards recovery.
By using a PICC line protector, you have greater control over the PICC line because it will keep the catheter and the entire area dry. It means that you can take a shower or take a bath without too much hassle. Always remember that an emergency dressing change is required if your PICC line gets wet because it poses a high risk for infection. That’s why you have to make sure to immediately contact your caregiver or home health nurse to change the dressing.
Bathing can be challenging for people with a PICC line because the catheter should be kept dry to avoid introducing water into the site that may cause infection. That’s why regardless of the type of material you prefer, it’s important to choose one that is waterproof.
Here’s how to apply a PICC line protector before bathing:
- Use the Seal Skin Medical Wrap or cover the catheter tubes or dressing
with a plastic wrap.
- Next, tape the plastic wrap to the skin above and below the PICC catheter.
- Dry the dressing and catheter if it gets damp.
- Don’t submerge the arm with the PICC in the bathtub.
Peace of Mind
If you want to have a peace of mind or assurance that your PICC line is kept secure and free from water or moisture, consider using a waterproof PICC line protector or cover. You’ll be more confident that you can take a shower or take a bath without your PICC dressing getting wet, which is a triggering factor for developing an infection.
If you or your loved one has a PICC line, it is best to consider using a waterproof skin wrap to leave the area dry and reduce the risk of developing an infection. Before taking a bath or shower, apply a PICC protector, or cover to the area with the help of your caregiver. This skin wrap is versatile and waterproof, which guards and secure the catheter site.