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Ambulation three hours after elective cardiac catheterisation through the femoral artery.
  1. G. Steffenino,
  2. A. Dellavalle,
  3. F. Ribichini,
  4. P. Russo,
  5. L. Conte,
  6. S. Dutto,
  7. G. Giachello,
  8. G. Lice,
  9. M. Tomatis,
  10. E. Uslenghi
  1. Division of Cardiology, Ospedale Santa Croce, Cuneo, Italy.


    OBJECTIVE: To test whether very early resumption of ambulation after femoral cardiac catheterisation is feasible and safe in patients with stable symptoms. DESIGN: Prospective study in a selected group of men and women undergoing elective cardiac catheterisation, with next day physical inspection. SETTING: Inpatient study. SUBJECTS: Two hundred consecutive ambulant patients submitted to diagnostic cardiac catheterisation through the femoral arterial route using 5F catheters: a femoral right heart study was done at the same time in 40 patients (20%). RESULTS: No patient had major complications during the study. Early ambulation was not allowed in two patients (1%) because of haematoma formation immediately after sheath removal, and in seven (3%) because of poor haemostasis or haematoma on inspection at 3 h. Early ambulation was interrupted in two patients (1%) because of transient arterial hypotension on standing in one, and the patient's preference in the other. Of 189 patients who resumed full ambulation at 3 h, one (0.5%) had a groin haematoma on discharge the next morning. Overall, haematoma 12 h after cardiac catheterisation was present in seven of the 200 patients initially included in the study (3.5%). None of the 191 patients with attempted early mobilisation had signs or symptoms of vascular complications one month or later after discharge. CONCLUSION: Supervised resumption of ambulation 3 h after uncomplicated cardiac studies with 5F femoral arterial catheters is safe and feasible in most ambulant patients undergoing elective cardiac catheterisation.

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