Transhepatic Tunneled Catheter Using Left Hepatic Vein: The Last Resort for Dialysis

Academic Article


  • Vascular access is the Achilles tendon of hemodialysis and is considered the lifeline for patients with end stage renal disease. Arteriovenous fistulas and grafts are the preferred traditional access for performing dialysis therapy. However, some patients exhaust the traditional routes of dialysis vascular access for different reasons. In search for alternatives, other unusual vascular routes have been explored, such as transhepatic and translumbar approaches, as the last resort to preserve life in this unfortunate population. Here, we present the unusual case of a 66-year-old female who ran out of the traditional vascular access options and became catheter dependent via the right femoral vein. However, due to recurrent femoral catheter infections, extensive skin calciphylactic lesions and her body habitus, other routes were explored and the decision was to use the transhepatic approach. Traditionally, the right and middle hepatic veins are used to insert these catheters. However, the use of the left hepatic vein was not reported in the literature. Hence, in order to avoid the skin lesions seen in our patient, the dialysis catheter was inserted using the left hepatic vein. Overall, this case highlights the challenges of securing a reliable vascular access to perform dialysis therapy and brings attention to other vascular dialysis routes in certain clinical scenarios.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 1671885
  • Author List

  • Abaza M; Almehmi SE; Almehmi A
  • Volume

  • 14