I have 2 IV Pitocin Problems I need help with...

First Calculation Problem: A patient is to receive 12 milliunits per minute of Pitocin. The directions for making up the fluid is to add 15 units of Pitocin to 1 liter of 5 % dextrose solution. Determine the rate of the IV in gtts/min and cc/hr using a drop factor of 40 gtts/ml.
Second calculation problem: A patient is to receive 10 milliunits per minute of Pitocin. The directions for making up the fluid is to add 8 units of Pitocin to 1 liter of 5% dextrose solution. Using a drop factor of 60gtts/ml, determine how long (in hours) would the 1 liter IV fluid last in continuous infusion? 

Jun 16, '08I hated math questions in school, I am so happy to be done with them. They always made them much harder in school than what they actually are in the real world.

Jun 16, '08I've tried but was never taught to do this kind of IV calculation. I know all of the med calculations and the rest of the IV calculations. Pitocin calculations weren't taught in LPN nursing school. So if there's anybody out there with a heart, I'd appreciate a teaching lesson just for these 2 Pitocin questions. Thanks!

Jun 16, '08ok sorry I tried but I am not getting one of the conversion factors wrong and can not find my nursing school math book. If you can find it you might try a book called nursing math simplified math magic it really helped me.

Jun 16, '08Quote from MurgyFirst Calculation Problem: A patient is to receive 12 milliunits per minute of Pitocin. The directions for making up the fluid is to add 15 units of Pitocin to 1 liter of 5 % dextrose solution. Determine the rate of the IV in gtts/min and cc/hr using a drop factor of 40 gtts/ml.
Second calculation problem: A patient is to receive 10 milliunits per minute of Pitocin. The directions for making up the fluid is to add 8 units of Pitocin to 1 liter of 5% dextrose solution. Using a drop factor of 60gtts/ml, determine how long (in hours) would the 1 liter IV fluid last in continuous infusion?
I can see problems with this in real practice: different admixtures. A big nono! Safety issue! We do a standard 20 units pitocin in 1000 cc LR. That mixes to 1 mu/min equals 3 cc/hr on the pump.
Also  a pump is a MUST for running pitocin!! 
Jun 16, '08Quote from RNLaborNurse4UThese are practice exam problems just to see if we could get the answer to the problemnot a real life IV problem. So are you saying there is no solution to either of these 2 IV problems?I can see problems with this in real practice: different admixtures. A big nono! Safety issue! We do a standard 20 units pitocin in 1000 cc LR. That mixes to 1 mu/min equals 3 cc/hr on the pump.
Also  a pump is a MUST for running pitocin!! 
Jun 16, '08I think I have the answers but do you have the answers? I can help you but I have to know if what I have is right. I can show you how to get there. What r the final answers?

Jun 16, '08If anyone else got the answers, will you PM me with them? I just spent 20 min trying to figure this out 1 yr out of nursing school and with no work experience so I'd really love the answers, lol... See how rusty I am....:chuckle

Jun 17, '08I'm still in nursing school and have spent the weekend working on math problems in preparation for my upcoming clinical math test so here's what I got (I can only do dimensional analysis; I have to see my units):
Question 1:
Calculate the concentration of the solution:
15 units added to 1000mL
15 units X 1000= 15000 munits
15000 munits/1000 mL= 15 munits/mL
drops/min:
12 munits X 1mL X 40 gtt = 32 gtt
min 15 munits mL min
ml/hr:
32 gtt X 1mL X 60 min = 48 ml
min 40 gtt 1h h
Question 2:
Concentration of solution:
8 units X 1000= 8000munits
8000 munits/1000 mL= 8 munits/mL
mL/hr:
10 munits X 60 min X 1 mL = 75mL/hr
min 1 h 8 munits
hours solution will last:
1000mL X 1 hr = 13.3h
75ml
I hope that is right. 
Jun 17, '08Sorry, it looks like the bottom units are not aligning under their corresponding upper units on the post. Here it is again with the slash as the dividing line:
Question 1:
Calculate the concentration of the solution:
15 units added to 1000mL
15 units X 1000= 15000 munits
15000 munits/1000 mL= 15 munits/mL
drops/min:
12 munits/min X 1 mL/15 munits X 40 gtt/mL= 32 gtt/min
ml/hr:
32 gtt/min X 1mL/40 gtt X 60 min/1h= 48 ml/h
Question 2:
Concentration of solution:
8 units X 1000= 8000munits
8000 munits/1000 mL= 8 munits/mL
mL/hr:
10 munits/min X 60 min/1 h X 1 mL/8 munits = 75mL/hr
hours solution will last:
1000mL X 1 hr/75 mL = 13.3h
I hope that is right. 
Jun 17, '08First of all, thank you for working out the problems for me.
The answer sheet for the Math for Nurses Practice Exam, that I'm working on, gives the answer to Question #1 as 40 gtt/min, rather than 32 gtt/min but your second answer for Question #1, 48 gtt/hr is in agreement with the answer sheet. I'm wondering if the answer sheet is wrong???? Your answer of 32gtt/min has got to be rightdo you agree?
You have the same answer as the answer sheet for Question #2.
I had the answers, I just didn't know how to work the problems and again I really appreciate your help!!!! Thanks a bunch!!!!Last edit by Murgy on Jun 17, '08 
Jun 17, '08ha! I got the same answers as Heart...
I don't think the 40 gtt/min on the first one is right either..I too got 32 and it seems weird that the drop factor given is 40 gtt/ml (was that wrong?) AND the answer is 40. Hmmm. Either the wording of the question is wrong, or the answer sheet is wrong..
These q's are so dumb. Most of your calculations in school are much easier and much more practical. And like the others said, you don't even use some of this in real life. But I guess that is nursing school too, lol