I was wondering if anybody had special hints to inserting an IV. I'm a 2nd year nursing student graduating in May and I wanted some advice on starting lines. Any help would be appreciated.
Nov 27, '01
I am by no means an expert (! just graduated in April) but the tips I have are heat the arms, and take your time palpating and choose the vein. If you can get away with inserting a 22 gauge do (if the person's Hgb is stable for example) and as soon and you get blood flashback drop the cath and start withdrawing the needle and sliding the catheter in so you don't puncture the vein. Have everything (tape, etc...) ready at the bedside so you don't have to fumble around after.
Nov 27, '01
Good advice there. Blanket from a blanket warmer wrapped on the arm for 5 minutes or so really brings those veins into view. Also gently pull the skin in the direction you are inserting, just above where you are inserting the needle to maintain stability of the vein as you instert. Once you get flash,, pull the tourniqet and use the blood flow in the vein to help advance the cath.
Good vein assessment is your biggest asset. You might see if you can float to A.M. admit for a few days and tell them you want all the iv sticks you can get while there.
I'v been doing IV sticks for 10 years and sometimes you cant hit the broad side of a barn no matter how much practice you have.
It's a day to day thing sometimes, just have confidence in yourself.