A Groshong line is a type of tunneled intravenous catheter used for central venous access. Groshongs may be left in place for extended periods and are used when long-term intravenous therapy is needed, such as for chemotherapy. Similar to the Hickman line, the tip of the catheter is in the superior vena cava, and the catheter is tunneled under the skin to an incision on the chest wall, where the distal end of the catheter exits the body. In contrast to the Hickman line, the tip of the Groshong line has a three-way valve which allows infusion as well as blood aspiration while reducing the risk of clotting, air embolism and blood reflux.
The insertion of a central Groshong line is usually done under local anesthetic by a radiologist or surgeon. It involves two incisions, one at the jugular vein and one on the chest wall. At the former, a catheter is inserted into the vein and advanced into the superior vena cava. It is then tunneled under the skin to the second incision. The first one is then sutured. Throughout the procedure, ultrasound and X-rays are used to ascertain the positioning of the catheter. Groshong catheters come in PICC line variations as well.