NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms

  • Resize font
  • Print
  • Email
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Pinterest

The NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms features 7,800 terms related to cancer and medicine.

Browse the dictionary by selecting a letter of the alphabet or by entering a cancer-related word or phrase in the search box.

peripheral venous catheter
(peh-RIH-feh-rul VEE-nus KA-theh-ter)
A thin, flexible tube that is inserted into a large vein, usually in the back of the hand, the lower part of the arm, or the foot. It is used to give intravenous fluids, blood transfusions, and chemotherapy and other drugs, and for taking blood samples. It avoids the need for repeated needle sticks.

EnlargePeripheral venous catheter; drawing of a peripheral venous catheter in a vein in the lower part of the arm with the catheter tubing clamped and capped off at the end.

Peripheral venous catheter. A peripheral venous catheter is a thin, flexible tube that is inserted into a vein. It is usually inserted into the lower part of the arm or the back of the hand. It is used to give intravenous fluids, blood transfusions, chemotherapy, and other drugs.