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PICC Line Placement and Removal

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A peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) helps you receive certain intravenous therapy (IV) treatments without having to receive a new IV at every appointment due to a semi-permanent catheter (thin tube). This may include patients who receive:

  • Chemotherapy
  • Regular blood transfusions
  • Dialysis

The University of Miami Health System interventional radiologists have years of experience in placing and removing PICC lines. They ensure the line is placed in the correct position and doesn’t interfere with your daily life.

Why Choose UHealth?

Expert care from highly trained interventional radiologists. Our interventional radiologists and radiology specialists are experts in a variety of minimally invasive procedures — everything from treatments to clear blocked blood vessels to advanced cancer therapies like NanoKnife®.

Leading-edge imaging care in South Florida. Our doctors are also researchers discovering new ways to improve diagnosis and treatment. That means you can get some of today’s most promising advancements through clinical trials. You benefit from the latest developments that are fast-tracked from the lab to the bedside.

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Who is a Candidate?

PICC lines are used in patients who may otherwise need frequent IVs or injections. You may need a PICC line if you have a condition like:

What to Expect

Your doctor may tell you not to eat or take certain medications, like aspirin or blood thinners before your procedure. Always tell your doctor what medicines you are taking, including vitamins or herbs.

During PICC line placement, your physician will apply local anesthesia to numb the area where the PICC line will be so you won’t feel pain. You may also receive sedation to help you stay calm during the procedure.

Next, the physician will make an incision over a vein in your arm near your elbow. They will insert the catheter (thin tube) through the incision and, using X-ray guidance, direct it to a vein in your heart. 

Part of the catheter is left out of the arm and attached to a specialized cap. Your nurses and doctors will use this cap to access the vein to draw labs or to give you medicines. Your doctor will put a bandage around the catheter, and you may also need a stitch or two to help the catheter stay in place.

The entire insertion procedure takes about 45 minutes. You can have a PICC line in place for weeks or months after this procedure. The procedure has little to no recovery time.

After your regular IV treatments are done, your physician will remove the PICC line. The PICC line is removed by slowly pulling the catheter out of the vein. When the PICC line is out, you may bleed for several minutes. Your physician will apply pressure and a bandage or dressing to the spot to stop bleeding. The removal procedure also has little to no recovery time.

Accepted Insurances

Note: Health plans that are currently contracted with UHealth are listed below. However, please check with your insurance provider to verify that UHealth is part of your provider network.