Persistent Left Superior Vena Cava Identified after Central Venous Catheter Placement – Case Report
Dagmar Oberhofer, Tino Klancir, Ana Jadrijević Štefek, Ninoslav Rudman
Persistent left superior vena cava (PLSVC) is the most frequent congenital anomaly of the cardinal systemic venous return. It is usually asymptomatic and discovered incidentally during central venous access procedures via the left internal jugular or subclavian vein. We present a case of an 86-year old female admitted with a head injury and rib fractures on her left side. A central venous catheter (CVC) was inserted into the left internal jugular vein under ultrasound guidance without complication. The post insertion chest X-ray showed the catheter in the left paravertebral position and malposition of CVC was suspected. Another CVC was placed in the right internal jugular vein with the correct positioning of the CVC in the superior vena cava on chest X-ray. Although central venous pressure on the right and left side was the same, the left central venous pressure waveform was atypical. A thoracic computed tomography with contrast and digital subtraction angiography through the left cubital vein confirmed the diagnosis of a PLSVC draining into the right atrium via the coronary sinus. Ascertaining the pattern of cardiac venous return is essential, as the site of drainage (right or left atrium) determines the possible use of a CVC placed in PLSVC.