Central Line (CL)

A vascular infusion device that terminates at or close to the heart or one of the great vessels. Here, the vessels are thick and tough and the large volume of blood dilutes infusions rapidly. An umbilical artery or vein catheter is considered a central line for neonates. Note: Neither the location of the insertion site nor the type of device may be used solely to determine whether the line qualifies as a central line. Only if the location of the tip of the line meets the criteria above does the device qualify as a central line. Central lines can be used for taking measurements, infusing chemotherapeutic (toxic) drugs, total parenteral solutions – often used for easy access for chronic treatments.