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Dictionary of Cancer Terms

View in Spanish: Catéter central de acceso venoso

Central venous access catheter (SEN-trul VEE-nus AK-ses KA-theh-ter)
A tube surgically placed into a blood vessel for the purpose of giving intravenous fluid and drugs. It also can be used to obtain blood samples. This device avoids the need for separate needle insertions for each infusion or blood test. Examples of these devices include Hickman catheters, which require clamps to make sure the valve is closed, and Groshong catheters, which have a valve that opens as fluid is withdrawn or infused and remains closed when not in use.

Source: National Cancer Institute Dictionary of Cancer Terms, available at www.cancer.gov/dictionary.