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antecubital fossa

area on the anterior surface of the arm situated in front of the cubitus, or elbow; anterior area where the arm bends when flexing at the elbow


method used to assure that environment is as pathogen free as possible

basilic vein

large superficial vein that arises from the ulnar side of the hand, passes up the forearm, and joins with the brachial veins to from the axillary vein

brachial veins

veins following the course of the brachial artery and joining with the basilic vein to form the axillary vein


a flexible tube passed into the body to remove or instill fluids or to keep a passageway open

catheter pinch off

rare complication of tunneled central venous catheters that occurs when catheter is compressed between first rib and the clavicle, causing an intermittent mechanical occlusion

central vascular access device

umbrella term that includes a variety of catheters, cannulas & infusion ports that allow intermittent or continuous central access to a bv; a device usually inserted into subclavian or jugular vein w/ distal tip resting in the SVC just above the RA & used for long-term IV therapy or parenteral nutrition

cehalic vein

superficial vein that arises from radial side of hand & winds anteriorly to pass along anterior border of brachioradialis muscle, ascends along lateral border of biceps muscle & pectoral border of deltoid muscle & finally opens into the axillary vein

chlorhexidine gluconate

antibacterial compound w/ substantial residual activity that is used as a liquid antiseptic and disinfectant; trade name is ChloraPrep

colloid solution

plasma expander; protein-containing fluid infused intravenously to help restore circulating blood volume


farthest from origin


abnormal heart rhythm


blood clot or bolus of air developed in or introduced into a blood vessel that moves from its place of origin and is capable of obstructing blood flow


seepage or introduction of fluid, such as intravenous fluid, into the tissues surrounding a blood vessel; sometimes used interchangeably with infiltration but more accurately describes catheter dislodgement with medication infusing into the tissues and causing actual or potential tissue damage

fibrinolytic agent

agent that dissolves fibrin, a protein that is essential for blood clotting, for the purpose of eliminating thrombi (blood clots); also called thrombolytic drugs


standard of measurement used to quantify a lumen's size, with lower #'s reflecting larger catheters and vice versa


parenteral anticoagulant

humer needle

noncoring device used to access an implanted port

implanted port

catheter whose end is attached to a small chamber placed in a subcutaneous pocket (instead of exiting from the skin), either on the anterior chest wall or on the forearm

implanted vascular access device

any of a number of types of access devices that are surgically affixed underneath the skin


lack of harmonious coexistence; used to refer to two or more medications or solutions that cannot be given simultaneously or mixed without changing the effects of each other or causing any new responses not seen with any of the drugs or solutions administered alone


slow, intentional introduction of fluid into a vein


wash out with fluid

isopropyl alcohol

transparent, volatile, colorless liquid used as a solvent and disinfectant and applied topically as an antiseptic

jugular vein

large vein that returns blood to the heart from the head and neck, with two on each side of the neck (and external and an internal jugular vein)


cavity or bore of a tubular organ or part


pertaining to or situated toward the midline


referring to a device or system that can inject fluid without the use of a needle

negative pressure

pressure (force) less than that of the atmosphere

nonthrombotic occlusion

obstruction of a blood vessel by a means other than a blood clot


obstruction that impedes flow, such as a blood clot in a vein


state of being open or unobstructed


performed through the skin

peripheral intravenous line

system that allows fluids and medications to be delivered through a catheter inserted in a peripheral vein; colloquially called a peripheral IV

peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC)

catheter used for long-term intravenous access and inserted in the basilic or cephalic vein just above or below the antecubital space with the tip of the catheter resting in the superior vena cava




accumulation of air or gas in the pleural space

positive pressure injection cap

cap attached to the end of a catheter that exerts positive pressure into the line after flushing and removing the syringe, thus preventing backflow of blood into the catheter and reducing the risk of occlusion

pounds per square inch (psi)

pressure a gas or liquid exerts on the walls of its container, measured in units of one pound of force or pressure applied to one square inch


topical anti-infective agent produced by reacting iodine with the polymer povidone to release iodine; trade name Betadine


deposit separated from a suspension or a solution and either falling to the bottom or floating on top


nearest to the original of a part


backward or return flow


portion of a central implanted device that provides a chamber implanted in a subcutaneous pocket with a catheter attached to the chamber and inserted into a central vein

right atrium

upper chamber of the right side of the heart, which collects blood from the upper and lower venae cavae and transmits it to the right ventricle


SALINE, ADMINISTER, SALINE, HEPARIN - technique for administering a medication intravenously, involving first flushing with normal saline solution, injecting the medication, flushing with normal saline, then flushing with heparin solution


presence in blood or other tissues of pathogens or their toxins

subclavian vein

vein that continues the axillary vein as the main venous stem of the upper limb, follows the subclavian artery, and joins with the internal jugular vein to form the brachiocephalic vein

subcutaneous tissue

layer of loose connective tissue directly under the skin

subcutaneous tunnel

trench created surgically under the skin for an implanted central catheter


one of the two veins bringing deoxygenated blood from the upper body to the right atrium of the heart


over 100 BPM

thrombolytic agent

agent that dissolves blood clots, for example, alteplase (Activase)

thrombotic occlusion

deposits of fibrin and blood components, or clots, within and around the central line that interfere with flow


stationary blood clot within a blood vessel

TPN - total parenteral nutrition

nutritionally adequate hypertonic solution containing glucose, electrolytes, and other nutrients delivered through an intravenous catheter

transparent dressing

protective covering often used over intravenous insertion sites to allow easy visualization of the site for signs of inflammation

trendelenburg position

placement of a patient with the entire bed frame tilted with the head of the bed lowered

tunneling technique

creation of a trench surgically under the skin for an implanted central catheter

turbulent flushing

intermittent push-stop-push technique of quickly injecting a small amount of flush solution, pausing, then injecting again and repeating until all the flush solution has been injected

valsalva maneuver

forceful exhalation against closed glottis, which increases intrathoracic pressure thus interferes w/ return of venous blood to heart; performed with central line insertion to create a positive phase in central venous pressure, thus reducing the risk of air being drawn into the central circulation and creating an air embolus


chemical that produces blisters


thick, sticky, or gummy; having a high degree of viscosity (resistance to flow)

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