Venobronchial fistula: A complication associated with central venous catheterization for chemotherapy

John F. Beauregard, Alan H. Matsumoto, Martin G. Paul, Richard W. Holt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We report a case in which a venobronchial fistula developed 4 months after insertion of a silicone rubber chronic central venous catheter for chemotherapy administration. In retrospect, the tip of the catheter was in the azygous vein rather than in the superior vena cava. The suboptimal position of the catheter tip, in combination with the infusion of sclerosing chemotherapeutic agents and hyperalimentation solution, may have predisposed the patient to this complication. Accurate localization of the tip of central venous catheters at the time of placement should minimize catheter‐related complications, including the rare complication of venobronchial fistula. After placement of chronic central venous catheters, biplanar chest X‐rays should be obtained to determine catheter tip location prior to the instillation of chemotherapeutic agents. Any residual questions concerning the catheter tip location after biplanar X‐rays should be addressed by prompt venography through the catheter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-52
Number of pages4
JournalCatheterization and cardiovascular diagnosis
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • chemotherapy complications
  • indwelling catheter
  • venopulmonary fistula

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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