Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

Complications of PVADs

• Phlebitis is the most common complication of PVADs, occurring when there is acute inflammation of a vein in the presence of intravenous therapy.
• Infiltration occurs when infusing fluids leak into the surrounding tissue, caused by dislodgment of the VAD catheter, improper placement or damage to the vessel.
• Extravasation occurs when there is infiltration of a vesicant medication or other agent that can cause tissue damage, pain, inflammation, irritation, blistering or necrosis.

Clinical Management
Assessment and Device Selection for Vascular Access
Background Information