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Removal of a tunnelled cuffed catheter (HICKMAN)

Information about what happens when you no longer need your HICKMAN line.

You have been treated using a special type of catheter called a Hickman line. It has been decided that you no longer require the device. Your Hickman line will be removed by a trained healthcare professional either in the X-RAY department, theatres or ward.

Possible risks and complications

Every procedure carries some risks and complications.  Before the line is removed the nurse or doctor will fully explain the risks to you to ensure you agree to proceed. You will also be asked at your appointment for your / your carer’s verbal consent before going ahead.


After removal of the Hickman, you may have one or two areas that will need a dressing applied (to the neck or chest area). You will also be informed if you have sutures (also known as ‘stitches’) or steri-strips in place.

  • Sutures will require removal after 7-10 days
  • Steri – strips after 4 –7 days (these will normally fall off)

Both can be removed by your practice nurse or referring unit / ward.
You will receive a call 24 hours following removal (or after a weekend) to check all is ok with the removal sites.

Who to contact

  • If at any time you are worried about your removal areas e.g. redness, inflammation, pain, new oozing or bleeding or
  • If you develop an ongoing temperature, shortness of breath or pain on breathing.

You should contact the Nurse or department where you received your treatment or had your Hickman removed. They will be pleased to discuss your concerns and, if necessary, check the area.

Times available

Radiology (X-ray) Nursing team     

IV Therapy/OPAT Team

Acute Oncology Team – Emergency telephone triage

Times available

Monday – Friday  9am – 5pm

Monday – Sunday  8:30am – 4:30pm
(Bank Holidays 9am – 4:30pm)

Monday – Friday 8am – 6pm


01296 316936

01296 315485 or 07810 181584

01296 315139