Have you ever hit the bone?

  1. Has anyone ever hit the humerus when giving an IM in the deltoid? If so, what do you do?
  2. Visit melissa_rn profile page

    About melissa_rn

    Joined: Feb '05; Posts: 39; Likes: 1
    Float nurse at sports medicine/family practice clinic


  3. by   DonnaRN
    Quote from melissa_rn
    Has anyone ever hit the humerus when giving an IM in the deltoid? If so, what do you do?
    Hi Melissa,

    I've in working in a pediatric doctor's office for about 6 months now after 8 years of adult care. On several occasions I've hit the femur in younger children/infants, and occasionally have hit the humerus on a thin teenager.

    My understanding is that they don't feel it, and none have reacted as if they experienced any additional pain (beyond being stuck with a needle, of course! ). What I was told by the nurses I trained with was just to pull the needle back out a little, aspirate, and then give the med.

    To avoid this (for the most part), I've learned to inject a little slower (tough when you're injecting one-handed and holding a fighting child with the other hand), and as time has passed my judgement skills of "kid sizing" have improved. None of the patients have suffered any harm, and I doubt they even knew the difference.

    Hope this helps!
    Last edit by DonnaRN on Jul 30, '05
  4. by   talaxandra
    I've hit the humerus once or twice, and the femur a couple of times, too (though not when I was injecting in the deltoid!). It's the ickiest feeling. I just pulled back a little, to inject in the muscle.
  5. by   VivaLasViejas
    I did it once when I was giving a 60-pound elderly lady who was dying from gastric cancer a shot of morphine. I'll never forget the feeling........the shock of it ran all the way up my own arm. Didn't bother the patient, however, in fact she said it was one of the best injections she'd ever gotten! After that, I always made sure to use a TB-type needle on super-skinny patients.........I don't EVER want to experience that again
  6. by   melissa_rn
    Glad to hear I did what everyone else did...pull out a little, aspirate, and give the med.

    The woman I was injecting was a big lady, too! A fisherman, at that, with big muscles, I NEVER would have thought I would have hit the bone on her with a 1.25" needle!

    She didn't notice a thing.
  7. by   live4today
    Yes, I had that unfortunate experience once years ago. The patient didn't have a clue though. That was good.
  8. by   AtlantaRN
    oh yes, just pull it out a little and give the injection...