IV Starts

  1. Any hints?

    I am a new grad in L&D. When I do a few IV's in a row, I am usually okay.

    But when I go a few days without doing one, I blow it. Literally.

    And I have no instinct how to do them on my own, I usually have a nurse with me guiding me as to what angle to use, how far to go in, etc.

    I know other hospitals send new hires to out-patient areas and they do IV's all day long for a few days until they're good. My hospital did not do this.

    We have these safety needles that retract and they are tricky. I think Johnson & Johnson makes them. Some of the older nurses hate them and use the non-safety Jelco's that anesthesia uses.

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    About MelissaCT

    Joined: Jan '02; Posts: 134; Likes: 3
    Family Nurse Practitioner
    Specialty: 7 year(s) of experience in L&D, Ambulatory Care


  3. by   CashewLPN
    practice, practice, practice.. thats all you need... and, the retractible J&J's that you use-- thats the one that has the tab that you have to push? with use, it gets easier than the jelcos...

  4. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I was a new grad in L and D 5 years ago...I agree, practice is the only way. Oh, and guess what. The EXPERIENCED nurses blow IV's now and then, also. Don't sweat it. My personal rule is 2 times; I blow it, I get someone else so as not to continually traumatize a patient unnecessarily. We all have good days and bad ones. With practice, you will develop a keen sense of what is the best place to go and get it right more and more often. Don't get discouraged; that will only work against you! Good luck!
  5. by   mistersleepy
    We use the same needles. I have found that you have a lot better luck if you get the stylette almost all of the way out before pushing the retract button. Also, choose the shorter catheter ones if your tray has both.
  6. by   mark_LD_RN
    we use the same ones and i hate them i now miss things i would have never missed or blew before. it just takes plenty practice. I find for me personally I had to make my self advanve the needle a little faster , go in at a shallower angle than I used to , and advance the needle a little further in before advancing just the catherter part. and most of all pray i get it
    hope this helps some.
  7. by   peter73
    We use the same type of IV cath. Took a while and some practice to get the hang of it. I usually tend to remove the needle then punch (or mash, when here in the South) the button to retract. I found that if I retracted the needle right away my hands had to do too many things at once and I lost the stick. Also, it helps to spin the cath arond the needle to break the seal before you start(spin it till it clicks back into place). Just what works for me.
    Good luck and practice, practice, practice! In no time you will be a full fledged vampire like the rest of us.

  8. by   caliotter3
    Just practice like everyone says. It will come. At least you get a chance. I don't work in an area where I can practice my IV skills at all.
  9. by   sphinx
    Yeah, practice......I'm in homecare, and had been a while without having done an IV, when they decided OB and peds nurses had to do our own IV's. I was petrified, since it been so long, and I was "out of practice". At that time, we were using the same needles as you, and I confess, I hated them. The way I hold it, I always pushed the d*** button too early and lost the site. Then we switched to introcan. I'm not sure who makes them, but they are also safety needles and so much easier, I think as easy as the old jelco's. One the cath is in pace you hold one finger down where the tip of the cath wouled be (like you would anyway, so blood doesn't pour out when you remove the needle) and one finger on the other end. You pull the needle out and wa-la, it automatically picks up this nifty little safety thing as it pulls out, no risk of being stuck. Now, I know its not likely your institution will up and change! But I had to plug it anyway, because since we started using them, I've had no problems (excpet these poor hyperemesis girls who've been stuck Q 3D for ages, and have no veins left to speak of and their docs refuse a PICC because of "infection risk". But I digress......again, it just takes practice. I learned on a vascular surgery floor, and these people invariably had crummy veins. It was tough, but before long I was a "queen", haha!You'll be too, in L&D you do a lot of sticks, and luckily it's on a (hopefully) healthy woman who is liekly to have decent veins. Good luck! You'll be fine!!!!