If it's infiltrated, restart it or at least try to

  1. My coworker hates IV's and never starts or restarts them if needed. She used to have another nurse on another unit come over and start them for her, but this other person is no longer available. Last night one of my pts had an IV due to dehydration. Upon making rounds I observed that the IV site was very edemetous. Turned off the IV and reported this to my coworker. She checked it out, but didn't restart it. Instead she flushed it with 125cc (?) of NS "To see what would happen" as she stated. Of course the arm became more edemetous, but she still didn't remove it or restart it. Shouldn't she have tried at least? Instead she left it for the next shift to deal with. Would this be considered a med error of some kind? Neglect? I'm thinking, "Gee, maybe you ought to hang yourself up on that IV pole........by your neck!" What's your opinion?
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    Joined: Mar '01; Posts: 3,254; Likes: 53


  3. by   cindyln
    Boy I would write that up! The patient had an order for an IV but didn't have one. That is a med error. Since when is 125cc a flush?? I only use 5-10cc's to flush a line.
  4. by   New CCU RN
    I would write her up....seriously.... she ought to know better and if she doesn't.....well she belongs on the other thread about the not so bright light bulbs!!!!!!!
  5. by   l.rae
    total, gross neglect and error!
  6. by   laurako
    IV team-- if it looks the least bit red or swollen, pull it, and restart it. It will save the patient lots of trouble. 125 cc flush????? That person needs to retake IV therapy class.
  7. by   New CCU RN
    I can't belive she just right out said "I gave a 125 cc flush just to see what happens.... hello....you can tell with a 5cc flush...what an idiot.... !!!!
  8. by   sjoe
    Write it up, just as you would if she "didn't happen to like" doing suctioning, and it was indicated.
  9. by   fab4fan
    If she cannot start IV's competently, then she needs to be in a position where that does not come up.

    I would write this up; I'm not one for saying that too often, but this situation just begs for it. A flush is not 125cc...you can usually tell after about 3cc if it's no good. What she did could have resulted in serious damage to the arm. Complications from IV's are one of the biggest reasons for litigation.

    Write it up.
    Last edit by fab4fan on Feb 4, '03
  10. by   P_RN
    Sheesh I've HAD that cold painful IV....poor patient, rotten nurse.

    First turn off the IV and if it mysteriously "falls out" hmmmm; tell the coworker...give her a few minutes...think of the patient.....either she starts it, or you will and write it up.
    I had a co-worker who would stick bandaids on a patients arm and say she tried.....until you asked her where her trash was and what size jelco she used. She didn't last long in the job.
  11. by   night owl
    Well, I see that my gut feelings were correct. I'm an LPN and at the moment am not IV certified, but will be. 125cc flush? He would have been better off drinking it for gosh sake. This is that same nurse that I had a thread going awhile back about how old is too old to work or something like that........she losing it I'm telling you!She was supposed to retire in January, but decided that she was just having a bad day. Give her enough rope or in this case IV tubing and she'll hang herself with it!
  12. by   SmilingBluEyes
    gross negligence and i would daresay malpractice. write it up. i would incensed if it were my family or myself.
  13. by   meownsmile
    What the begeebers was she thinking?????? 125cc? She needed like 12 10cc syringes. Good lord Toomey and Luer Lock syringes only hold 60. If she used a 100cc flush bag,, thats not a flush its considered a bolus. This gal needs a serious meeting with the nurse manager. No excuses for this one. We only use 3 cc for a lock or iv flush manually. And any hint of infiltration or phlebitis and its outta there.
  14. by   cwazycwissyRN
    I agree with meoynsmile......not to mention the dehydration of the patient. How long had the IV been left unattended?