is IV hard?

  1. I assume all nurses does IV ? right ?

    any ways if nurses do, is it scary or hard knowing that you might mess up ?

    im just asking this question because i know a friend who was hooked up to IV and they messed up and the next day dude had to get his thumb chop off ?
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   ChicooBax
    dont know why he would have to get his thumb cut off
    but starting ivs is a little tough at first but get help from other nurses and you'll be less scared
    i work on a skilled unit and start ivs farely often its easier than you think and if they already have a site or line and your nervous about hanging the bag do it outside of the room
  4. by   RNsRWe
    Quote from Ilubrize
    I assume all nurses does IV ? right ?

    any ways if nurses do, is it scary or hard knowing that you might mess up ?

    im just asking this question because i know a friend who was hooked up to IV and they messed up and the next day dude had to get his thumb chop off ?
    This doesn't make any sense.

    If the nurse pushed something like Phenergan (undiluted, fast) and it extravasated (went into the tissue instead of the vein) then yes, you could wind up with some nasty necrosis and lose pieces that are important to you. But cutting off a thumb the next day? No.

    Are you a student?
  5. by   lilcajunnurse
    IV's are hard on certain ppl. Practice makes perfect. So if you are a new nurse, you should volunteer to do as many IV's as you can. And even if you are scared to do the "hard" ones, go in the room with the nurse and look for a vein. Then watch the more experienced nurse insert the IV. Never be afraid, most of the time when we miss it is because the vein didn't cooperate with us. We can hit a vein, but it has to cooperate. Hands are easy for us but a pain for the pt. also IV's inserted in the AC as ER nurses like to do are a pain for the pt. (they have to keep their arm straight all the time) but go where you feel the best about. and never, I mean never let the pt. know you feel insecure about inserting their IV. Also, practice drawing blood , if your hospital allows. Here we draw the blood lab needs when we put the IV in. So no second stick is needed.
  6. by   woody62
    Starting one or getting one started? I found IV's easy to start, when I was starting them, even in geratic age patients. But now that I am on the receiving end, I've had some pretty bad experiences, with nurses who ignore my statement that 'I am really a hard stick.'

    Woody
  7. by   BORI-BSNRN
    Never heard something like that before but anything could happens...let me tell you that isn't so easy to do that procedure but with a lot of practice and patience you will do just fine, of course, hope you have a good/nice preceptor that is willing to teach you.

    INITIATIVE is a very important quality in Nursing if you want to learn... don't be afraid to ask
    Last edit by BORI-BSNRN on Sep 17, '07
  8. by   ohmeowzer RN
    no iv's arn't hard.. just take pratice.... i don't understand why they had to cut this guys thumb off for a inflatrated IV ?? no way.. it wasn't the IV, he must of had other problems....
    you will get the hang of iV's and you will find them not so bad. there will be someone there to help you. good luck in your schooling.
  9. by   RNfromMN
    I'll never forget what a teacher of mine told us the first day we had lecture on starting IVs. And keep in mind, this teacher was NOT known to coddle us:

    "So today we're going to talk about IVs. Before we get into the how tos & what not to dos, there's one thing I want to say. Once you all learn how to start an IV & have the opportunity to do so in clinical, you will either have one of two attitudes towards starting IVs: You will either jump at every chance you get to start one, or you will be the type of nurse that isn't quite as comfortable with it & will often run to another nurse on the floor to either supervise your IVs, or do them for you...EITHER WAY IS FINE."

    It really surprised me to hear her say that, because she was the type to "force" her students into running head on & doing any procedure they weren't 100% comfortable with. I was totally relieved to hear her say that, because I was the type of student that put off doing injections & putting in Foley caths, etc. until I absolutely had to to do them.

    As it turns out, even though I was absolutely terrified of IVs & decided right away that I would be the type of nurse to get some help every time I had to do one, my preceptorship involved starting up to 10 IVs a day - turns out, I love starting IVs.

    Oh, & it was this same teacher that drilled into our heads that we had to be super careful starting IVs because there are 10 different ways we could kill a patient (yes, she said "kill") if we did it wrong. When I told my preceptor & the other nurses I worked with about that, they all started laughing & said that was ridiculous. I'm sure it's possible to "kill" a pt (air embolus, infection), but that's the wrong attitude to have when going in to start your first IVs.

    I would guess there's more to your friend's story than he's telling you, otherwise, you can guarantee you would have also heard about the lawsuit that followed his unfortunate loss of his thumb.
  10. by   Altra
    I love a good urban legend ... government conspiracy theories too.
  11. by   pink2blue1
    Quote from Ilubrize
    I assume all nurses does IV ? right ?

    any ways if nurses do, is it scary or hard knowing that you might mess up ?

    im just asking this question because i know a friend who was hooked up to IV and they messed up and the next day dude had to get his thumb chop off ?
    Since I am an LVN I had to go through an IV certification course in order to be able to start IV's and maintain IV's. Even though I went through the course and got all of my sticks in the first time, I was very scared on my first patient! I had the Dr at bedside and my charge nurse with me. It was a patient who was elderly and needed the site for some IV Zofran. I missed the first time, but got in the second time. After that I asked for ALL the IV's on the floor, no matter how hard a stick the nurses thought it was going to be. After practice I got quite good and now I love starting IV's. It was one of the things I was most afraid of when I first started on the floor.
  12. by   brighella
    Im a student and had IV lab this past friday. The professors emphasised so much that we shouldnt be nervous that I think a lot of people got nervous. I for one, ended up sticking a couple of friends several times, and was thoroughly frustrated with the whole thing (to the point of taking a break and crying some angry tears while trying to pull myself together) I eventually got an AC IV on a girl who had had several unsuccessful sticks done on her, and so the day didnt feel like a complete failure. The instructors told us that we were trying to be too gentle, and that it requires a whole lot more force than you would think. Im trying not to dread the point where I have the opportunity to stick a patient, but its there.
    Sarah
  13. by   nursemike
    I saw a pt who subsequently lost a hand after dilantin infiltration--terrible. She had the purple glove the first time I saw her. It didn't happen overnight, and should never have happened--probably had nothing to do with the nurse who initially placed the IV, although the hand is not an appropriate site if the pt is getting IV dilantin.

    Starting IVs was hard for me, at first. Getting better, although this weekend was a bust. Weekends like this don't really rain on my confidence, though. The first one I couldn't get, nobody could get. He had inadvertantly d/c'd his own subclavian central line, had no useable veins, and the docs decided he was ok with no access since up for discharge today. The other took the best sticker I know 3 tries, and we're hoping it holds up a coupla days to discharge.

    I still hit some on the second try, but usually if I can't get it, it isn't an easy stick for the experts, either. I use a Venoscope (transilluminator). It's helpful at times, useless at others. A vein you can feel is always better, but seeing the shadow of even a good vein lets you visualize where it goes. If I had it to do over, though, I'd see if I couldn't find one for less than $175, though.
  14. by   pagandeva2000
    I am nervous about IVs also, but I want to do them. I have been a phlebotomist for many years prior to this, but, to me, there is a difference between drawing something out and then, placing something in to stay. But, I will make myself, because it does slow the process down to wait for someone else to begin one for you. I felt the same way when I started drawing blood, and I became very good, so, I have to feel the same about this. Good luck!

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