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. 21 Comments so far...

  3. 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. 0
    You can find alot of IV start/ nursing info on Pinterest.
  5. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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


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