Any hot tips for starting IV's????

  1. I just can't seem to get the knack of IV starts. I work nights at a rural hospital on the tele floor. 99% of the time they come from ER with one already started. Usually I only start one if it goes bad or gets pulled out. Not a lot of practice. Unless it is a "hose" I don't seem to have much luck. Any tried and true tips to offer?????????
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   TrudyRN
    tangential light (light from the side, not overhead); apply a little heat to the intended site (careful not to burn the pt);
    get yourself into a comfortable position; try using the BP cuff instead of a tourniquet; have a helper if pt is restless; use a butterfly; Just realize that practice and practice alone makes perfect. Have your tape or clear dressing, antibiotic cream, whatever all set. If you're starting a saline lock, have a saline syringe ready to flush it right away.
  4. by   dbihl
    I set my stuff up and find the vein, then dont take my eye off the angle I want to approach. Also use a 3 cc syringe to flush not a 10. Creates less pressure and less of a chance of blowing the vein. I am talking about starting IV in other places besides the AC. Wehn you get the "flash" if you are in a small vein and are hitting a valve and the catheter tip wont advance after you have retrtacted the needle, use the 3cc syringe to push a little saline in there and *open* up the vein as you advance it. Works like a charm~~~good luck~~~~and dont give up. ITs not that hard.
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
  6. by   EricJRN
    Some great tips above. Would they let you spend a shift or two in ER or maybe Day Surgery/Pre-Op to get some more sticks?
  7. by   PANurseRN1
    Quote from dbihl
    I set my stuff up and find the vein, then dont take my eye off the angle I want to approach. Also use a 3 cc syringe to flush not a 10. Creates less pressure and less of a chance of blowing the vein. I am talking about starting IV in other places besides the AC. Wehn you get the "flash" if you are in a small vein and are hitting a valve and the catheter tip wont advance after you have retrtacted the needle, use the 3cc syringe to push a little saline in there and *open* up the vein as you advance it. Works like a charm~~~good luck~~~~and dont give up. ITs not that hard.
    A three cc syringe creates more pressure, not less.
  8. by   newtelenurse
    Thanks all!
    I will check out the past posts and the web site...and keep on practicing!
  9. by   subee
    Quote from TrudyRN
    tangential light (light from the side, not overhead); apply a little heat to the intended site (careful not to burn the pt);
    get yourself into a comfortable position; try using the BP cuff instead of a tourniquet; have a helper if pt is restless; use a butterfly; Just realize that practice and practice alone makes perfect. Have your tape or clear dressing, antibiotic cream, whatever all set. If you're starting a saline lock, have a saline syringe ready to flush it right away.
    If you have a crotch where two veins intersect, use the crotch. Don't bother with a 22 gauge unless the patient is in dire streights and you have nothing else - those little threads kink off very easily.

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