Pediatric Ethanol Lock Therapy Study.

This study has been completed.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Judy Martin, University of Pittsburgh Identifier:
First received: July 7, 2009
Last updated: December 9, 2014
Last verified: December 2014
This study is a double-blind crossover design to compare prophylaxis with ethanol lock therapy versus placebo lock therapy (heparin). The primary outcome measure will be the number of catheter related blood stream infections (CRBSI) in each time period.

Condition Intervention
Catheter-Related Infections
Drug: 25% ethanol
Other: heparin lock

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Caregiver, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: Ethanol Lock Therapy for the Prevention of Catheter Related Blood Stream Infections

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by University of Pittsburgh:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Number of episodes of catheter related blood stream infections in each study period. [ Time Frame: 7 months per study patient ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • safety, side effects [ Time Frame: 7 months per study patient ] [ Designated as safety issue: Yes ]

Enrollment: 15
Study Start Date: August 2008
Study Completion Date: December 2014
Primary Completion Date: December 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: ethanol lock Drug: 25% ethanol
Study Lock -25% Ethanol- The ethanol lock therapy consists of placing up to 2.3 ml of 25% ethanol into the central venous catheter and allowing it to dwell for 4 to 12 hours per day.
Placebo Comparator: heparin lock Other: heparin lock
Placebo Lock - Heparin - These will be prepared in a sterile fashion in the Pharmacy of Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh in 10 day supplies as 1ml lock syringes utilizing 100 units/ml if the central venous catheter is accessed once daily and 10 units/ml if accessed more than once daily. The lock solution will be instilled and allowed to dwell for 4 to 12 hours.

Detailed Description:

Central venous catheters (CVCs) are crucial for patients who require long term vascular access due to a variety of underlying diseases. Children with intestinal insufficiency and other diseases require vascular access to receive total parenteral nutrition, chemotherapy, fluid support and for the convenience of avoiding peripheral sticks when multiple blood draws are required. While these catheters have many benefits, they are also associated with complications such as catheter-related bloodstream infections (CRBSI). These infections can be a major cause of morbidity, mortality, and increased health care costs. Coagulase-negative staphylococci, Staphylococcus aureus, aerobic gram-negative bacilli, and Candida species (especially albicans) are the most common organisms responsible for these infections. These infections are traditionally treated with systemic antimicrobial therapy. There are times when the catheter must be removed to adequately treat the infection, however, indications for catheter removal in children are controversial. For some children with a history of multiple line infections, there are limited sites available to place new vascular access when the CVC needs to be replaced. Reducing the number of infections in this group of children is highly desirable. The goal of this study is to improve patient outcomes by reducing the risk of infection, thereby decreasing waitlist morbidity and mortality and improving post transplant care.

Lock therapy is the procedure of allowing medications to dwell in the line for extended periods of time without interruption. Many different agents such as ethanol, vancomycin and gentamicin have been used successfully as a means to salvage a CVC that has become infected. There is limited information regarding the use of lock therapy to prevent CRBSI in patients with CVCs. However, in patients with a history of multiple CRBSI, who have a critical need to maintain vascular access, lock therapy with a solution of 25% ethanol has been suggested to prevent future CRBSI. There is sufficient data to suggest that this combination is likely to be effective, is unlikely to lead to the development of multidrug resistant organisms and is well tolerated. Our hypothesis is that the use of ethanol as a lock therapy can reduce the number of CRBSI in both pre and post transplant patients with intestinal insufficiency.

Specific Aim: To compare the number of CRBSI in patients who receive ethanol lock therapy with the number of infections while on placebo lock therapy with heparin. This will be accomplished by conducting a prospective cross-over, double blind, placebo controlled study in children who have intestinal insufficiency and a history of multiple CRBSIs. Each child will receive 3 months of study lock therapy (25% ethanol) and 3 months of placebo lock therapy (heparin). The investigators, the patient and their family will be blinded to the treatment. The primary outcome measure will be the number of CRBSIs. Patients will also be observed for possible side effects from the therapy, and the need for line removal. This pilot study should provide preliminary data and information regarding the feasibility for a larger, multi-center study of ethanol lock therapy for the prevention of CRBSI.


Ages Eligible for Study:   6 Months to 21 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion criteria:

  • patients with central venous access and a history of three or more CRBSI in the prior 6 months
  • age greater than 6 months
  • anticipation for the need for continued central venous access over the next 7 months
  • availability to come for a monthly study visit
  • anticipation that the patient will receive medical care at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh for the majority of the CRBSI which occur during the next 7 months and the ability to lock the central venous catheter for a minimum of 4 hours per day

Exclusion criteria:

  • age less than 6 months and greater than or equal to 21 years
  • known immunodeficiency (with the exception of immunosuppression in a patient after organ transplantation)
  • known allergy or intolerance to ethanol or heparin lock therapy
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00948441

United States, Pennsylvania
Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States, 15201
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Pittsburgh
Principal Investigator: Judith M Martin, MD University of Pittsburgh
  More Information

No publications provided

Responsible Party: Judy Martin, Associate Professor, University of Pittsburgh Identifier: NCT00948441     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 08010189 
Study First Received: July 7, 2009
Last Updated: December 9, 2014
Health Authority: United States: Institutional Review Board

Keywords provided by University of Pittsburgh:
intestinal insufficiency
central venous catheter
Catheter-Related Infections

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Catheter-Related Infections
Anti-Infective Agents
Anti-Infective Agents, Local
Cardiovascular Agents
Central Nervous System Agents
Central Nervous System Depressants
Fibrin Modulating Agents
Fibrinolytic Agents
Hematologic Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Pharmacologic Actions
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Therapeutic Uses processed this record on February 04, 2016