Glossary Entry: Recirculation Catheter


Definition: A recirculation catheter is a medical device used to facilitate the recirculation of blood during hemodialysis. It is designed to create a circuit for blood flow, allowing for the removal of waste and excess fluid from the body.

Detailed Description

Types and Variations

Variations: Recirculation catheters may come in different lengths and diameters to accommodate patients with varying anatomies. They may also have different designs for optimal blood flow and compatibility with dialysis machines.


Common Uses: Recirculation catheters are commonly used during hemodialysis procedures for patients with end-stage renal disease. They are essential for creating a continuous flow of blood to and from the dialysis machine, allowing for efficient filtration and purification.

Insertion and Placement

Procedure: The insertion and placement of a recirculation catheter require precise positioning within the vascular system to ensure proper blood flow. Healthcare professionals must carefully follow specific techniques to insert the catheter, such as the Seldinger technique, to minimize the risk of complications.

Clinical Considerations

Potential Complications

Risks: Potential complications associated with recirculation catheters include infection at the insertion site, blood clots, and mechanical issues affecting blood flow. Healthcare providers must monitor for these complications and take appropriate measures to minimize their likelihood.

Care and Maintenance

Maintenance Requirements: Proper care and maintenance of recirculation catheters involve regular monitoring for signs of infection, maintaining cleanliness at the insertion site, and following strict protocols for preventing blood clots and blockages.

Additional Information

Related Devices

Associated Terms: Other devices commonly used in conjunction with recirculation catheters include dialysis machines, hemodialysis needles, and ancillary equipment for maintaining a sterile environment during procedures.

Innovations and Advancements

Recent Developments: Recent advancements in recirculation catheter design have focused on improving material biocompatibility, enhancing flexibility for ease of insertion, and reducing the risk of kinking or other obstructions in the catheter.

Regulatory and Safety Notes

Regulations: Recirculation catheters must comply with relevant medical device regulations and safety standards to ensure their effectiveness and patient safety during hemodialysis procedures. Healthcare providers should be aware of these regulations when using and maintaining these devices.