Max had a PICC line placed on day 10 of his NICU stay. It was pulled a day or two later because his leg started to look a little red. When the tip was analyzed, it did show bacteria clustered on the tip, but the docs assured us that it wouldn't amount to anything because the bacteria was clustered. Well, after a couple of months and 3 infections later, the worse was confirmed. Max had endocriditis (vegetation on the heart) This happened because Max has pulmonary stenosis (a narrowing in his pulmunary valve in his heart). The PS was not diagnosed until a week after the PICC line placement. Even with PS, the doctors would have recommended a PICC line though. In hindsight, I will never put a PICC line in another baby of mine until all of the veins run out on their body first (from IV sticks). My son almost died from the infections, and thankfully the endocriditis was finally correctly diagnosed and treated (but it took over two months to figure out he had it, because it is very hard to detect).
That's my two cents....
DH, John (35)
Max, 1/20/03, 25 wks, 534g. (IUGR), severe PE