The surveillance of a vascular access (VA) is of primary importance for its outcome and for the patients’ survival. However, there is still confusion about its usefulness, who should make it (physician or nurse) and when, and what is the best functional test to use. This retrospective analysis reports our experience of VA monitoring; it is based on the collaboration between concept doctors and nurses and on parameters integration, realized with the help of a software for vascular access monitoring (SMAV) designed by us. The analysis confronts the data gathered on a group of 100 patients, 13 months before the adoption of the SMAV, and another 100 patients, 19 months after. Of these patients, 13 belonged to both groups and were “controls of themselves”. The number of thrombosis and angioplasties (PTA) plummeted in the 19 months in which the SMAV was used, from 10 (10%; 0.008 thrombosis/patient month) to 1 (1%; 0.0005 thrombosis/patient month) (p <0.01) and from 49 (49%; 0.037 PTA/patient month) to 27 (27%; 0.014PTA/patient month) (p <0.05) respectively. In the 13 control patients, a reduction of 70% in the number of PTA (from 26 to 8) was observed. SMAV allowed us to integrate the many functional parameters, making it easy to share information, encouraging teamwork, strengthening professional skills, and favouring the best management of AVs. The result was a reduction in thrombotic events and, surprisingly, a reduction of the need for PTA, most likely thanks to the higher level of attention in the evaluation and puncture of AV.
Keywords: arterio-venous fistula, surveillance, SMAV