The Official Journal of EuroPCR and the European Association of Percutaneous Coronary Interventions (EAPCI)

Ultrasound-guided access of the distal radial artery at the anatomical snuffbox for catheter-based vascular interventions: A technical guide

DOI: 10.4244/EIJ-D-19-00555

1. Vancouver General Hospital, Radiology, Vancouver, Canada
2. Department of Cardiology, Tergooi Hospital, Blaricum, the Netherlands
3. University of Chicago Medicine, Chicago, IL, USA
4. Department of Interventional Radiology, Vancouver General Hospital, University of British Columbia, Canada

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Conventional radial access has been shown to have many advantages over transfemoral approach. The risk of potential radial artery occlusion and subsequent hand ischaemia can be reduced further by accessing the vessel distally at the anatomical snuffbox, allowing for maintenance of antegrade flow to the hand by the superficial palmar arch branch. Additional potential advantages of distal radial access in comparison to the conventional radial approach at the wrist include fewer puncture site complications and faster post-procedural haemostasis as the vessel is very superficial. Furthermore, it provides another safe, non-femoral option for vascular access. The use of ultrasound guidance enables the operator to identify important anatomical landmarks and avoid injuring adjacent structures. We provide a detailed step-by-step guide for performing distal radial access using sonographic and anatomical correlation thereby facilitating safe access and optimising technical success.

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