Could I get some quick tips on IV starts?

  1. 0 I've had marginal success with starting IV's, but lately it has been quite a dry spell. I think I may be overshooting the veins on some.

    Do you guys and gals have techniques for starting them? At what angle do you insert the needle? How far?

    And how do you get invisible veins to pop up?

    All sage advice welcome!

    Sent from my iPhone using allnurses.com
  2. Visit  j_tay1981 profile page

    About j_tay1981

    j_tay1981 has '1' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Neuro, Med-surg.'. From 'Omaha, NE'; 34 Years Old; Joined Sep '09; Posts: 219; Likes: 62.

    21 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  Annaiya profile page
    0
    I think the best thing to do I'd watch your fellow nurses who have a lot of experience. Watching what they did taught me a lot. I think it's hard to describe in writing when so much of it is based on actually seeing and touching the patient.
  4. Visit  hope3456 profile page
    0
    You can find alot of IV start/ nursing info on Pinterest.
  5. Visit  TheCommuter profile page
    3
    1. I spend no more than 1 minute searching for a suitable vein.

    2. Rub the area with an alcohol prep pad.

    3. Let the extremity dangle downward for a couple of minutes so the veins fill with blood.

    4. Apply the tourniquet (not always necessary for a very elderly patient with tiny veins that blow easily).

    5. Imagine that the vein is a mini waterhose. Quickly jab the catheter into the vein at a 10 to 15 degree angle (almost level with the skin).

    6. Once I receive blood return, I keep inserting for another 0.5 centimeters before loosening the tourniquet and removing the needle.

    7. As I pull the needle out, I gently push the rest of the catheter into the vein.
    sle9403RN, jcbhappy, and Twinmom06 like this.
  6. Visit  j_tay1981 profile page
    0
    Quote from hope3456
    You can find alot of IV start/ nursing info on Pinterest.
    I'll check that out. Thanks!

    Sent from my iPhone using allnurses.com
  7. Visit  j_tay1981 profile page
    0
    Quote from TheCommuter
    1. I spend no more than 1 minute searching for a suitable vein.

    2. Rub the area with an alcohol prep pad.

    3. Let the extremity dangle downward for a couple of minutes so the veins fill with blood.

    4. Apply the tourniquet (not always necessary for a very elderly patient with tiny veins that blow easily).

    5. Imagine that the vein is a mini waterhose. Quickly jab the catheter into the vein at a 10 to 15 degree angle (almost level with the skin).

    6. Once I receive blood return, I keep inserting for another 0.5 centimeters before loosening the tourniquet and removing the needle.

    7. As I pull the needle out, I gently push the rest of the catheter into the vein.
    Thanks! I'm impressed you spend so little time vein hunting. I've had some patients who don't look like they even posses veins in their extremities

    Sent from my iPhone using allnurses.com
  8. Visit  Do-over profile page
    3
    Quote from j_tay1981
    And how do you get invisible veins to pop up?
    Personally, I prefer veins I can feel to the ones that I can see.
    jcbhappy, klone, and jadelpn like this.
  9. Visit  elkpark profile page
    1
    My dad was an anesthesiologist (started IVs all day, every day) and his advice to me when I was in school was, you can start an IV on anyone if you can get the tourniquet tight enough (except for little old people, as already noted). Practice and get good at tying a nice, tight tourniquet.
    SillyStudent likes this.
  10. Visit  Sunflowerinsc profile page
    1
    As long as you can feel a vein , doesn't matter if you can't see it. And don't forget anatomy you learned
    , gives you a place to start .
    jcbhappy likes this.
  11. Visit  veggie530 profile page
    0
    Quote from TheCommuter
    1. I spend no more than 1 minute searching for a suitable vein.

    2. Rub the area with an alcohol prep pad.

    3. Let the extremity dangle downward for a couple of minutes so the veins fill with blood.

    4. Apply the tourniquet (not always necessary for a very elderly patient with tiny veins that blow easily).

    5. Imagine that the vein is a mini waterhose. Quickly jab the catheter into the vein at a 10 to 15 degree angle (almost level with the skin).

    6. Once I receive blood return, I keep inserting for another 0.5 centimeters before loosening the tourniquet and removing the needle.

    7. As I pull the needle out, I gently push the rest of the catheter into the vein.
    I pull down on the skin to tighten it when I insert the catheter the rest of the way, too. Keeps the catheter from binding
  12. Visit  TheCommuter profile page
    0
    Quote from veggie530
    I pull down on the skin to tighten it when I insert the catheter the rest of the way, too. Keeps the catheter from binding
    Thanks. I forgot about mentioning the importance of using one of your free fingers to maintain traction on the skin and hold the vein in place.
  13. Visit  bradons profile page
    1
    practice practice practice.

    Don't shy away from hard starts.
    jadelpn likes this.
  14. Visit  jadelpn profile page
    0
    It is all in the feel. A vein--that you may not even be able to see--is bouncy like a rubber band. Extremity down. Agitate the skin with the alcohol pad. Sometimes you reall have to feel for a vein, even if deep.

    On elderly people, their skin can be paper thin, therefore, veins that seem like you could get a 14 gauge in them from 50 feet away is not always the case. Their veins will be the ones that most often roll. If you take your non-dominant hand, secure the extremity with it, keep the skin somewhat taut with that hand, and dominant hand sticks and advances.

    The angle needs to be closer to the skin--not going in like you would for a straight stick blood draw, or when you advance, you will blow the vein at that angle.

    As a previous poster mentioned, don't shy away from the tough sticks. Really press and feel for the veins. Once you get good at feeling for where your options are, it will get better.


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