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Case Report  |   March 1995
Fatal venous air embolism after removal of a central venous catheter
Article Information
Case Report   |   March 1995
Fatal venous air embolism after removal of a central venous catheter
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, March 1995, Vol. 95, 204. doi:10.7556/jaoa.1995.95.3.204
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, March 1995, Vol. 95, 204. doi:10.7556/jaoa.1995.95.3.204
Abstract

Venous air embolism is an infrequent, but potentially disastrous, occurrence after the insertion or removal of central venous catheters. The authors describe fatal venous air embolism after removal of a central venous catheter in a 43-year-old man recovering from coronary artery bypass surgery. They discuss the pathophysiology, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. Several practical considerations are necessary to prevent this complication of central venous catheterization, a procedure commonly delegated to junior house officers.