Practical Aspects of Nontunneled and Tunneled Hemodialysis Catheters
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Nontunneled hemodialysis catheters (NTHCs) are typically used when vascular access is required for urgent renal replacement therapy. The preferred site for NTHC insertion in acute kidney injury is the right internal jugular vein followed by the femoral vein. When aided by real-time ultrasound, mechanical complications related to NTHC insertion are significantly reduced. The preferred site for tunneled hemodialysis catheters placement is the right internal jugular vein followed by the left internal jugular vein. Ideally, the catheter should be inserted on the opposite side of a maturing or planned fistula/graft. Several dual-lumen, large-diameter catheters are available with multiple catheter tip designs, but no one catheter has shown significant superior performance.