Evid Based Nurs 6:56 doi:10.1136/ebn.6.2.56
  • Quality improvement

Local warming of the hand and lower arm improved successful peripheral venous cannulation and reduced insertion time

 QUESTION: Does local warming of the hand and lower arm facilitate insertion of peripheral venous cannulas?


Randomised (allocation concealed), blinded (clinicians and outcome assessors) controlled trial and randomised (allocation concealed), blinded (clinicians and outcome assessors) crossover trial.


Neurosurgical unit and haematology ward of a university hospital in Vienna, Austria.


100 neurosurgical patients (mean age 53 y, 53% women) who had a physical status score of 1 or 2 (healthy or mild and well controlled systemic disease, American Society of Anesthesiologists) were included in the randomised trial, and 42 patients (mean age 63 y, 52% women) with leukaemia who were scheduled for ≥2 sessions of chemotherapy at least 1 week apart were included in the randomised crossover trial. All neurosurgical patients and 95% of patients with leukaemia were included in the analysis.


Neurosurgical patients were allocated to active warming with a carbon fibre warming mitt (Thermamed, Bad Oeynhausen, Germany) warmed to 52°C and placed over the left hand and forearm in the preoperative area (n=50) or to passive warming (mitt …

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