More bonehead IM questions

  1. Why do so many nurses insist on giving IM meds to the dorsal gluteal muscle since it is the most unsafe place to give it? The vastus lateralis muscle is large, easily accessed and safe muscle to give the injection, the ventral gluteal is also as safe muscle to give the injection. So why give the IM to the most unsafe muscle, dorsal gluteal, when you can choose to other safe ones?
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    About garciadiego

    Joined: Feb '06; Posts: 207; Likes: 29
    from HI , US


  3. by   leslie :-D
    i give most of my im's in the vastus lateralis or quads.
    if you use the proper landmarks, the buttocks is still safe..."upper, outer".

  4. by   UM Review RN
    I go ventrogluteal most of the time. Here's a link to some instructional pictures for those of us who hardly ever give IM injections:
  5. by   twinmommy+2
    One time I was giving two shots, I think one was phenergan and one toradol to a thin patient who had nerve pain down one side of her body into her leg. So I didn't want to give it on that side, I gave two shots in the ventrogluteal and one in the vastis latoralis. She actually said the vg one hurt lots less even when I gave more in that one. But I guess its all in how you give it too. Needless to say I give it vg more often then not now.
  6. by   Spidey's mom
    Nice photos . . . thanks!

    I use ventrogluteal most of the time too. The only time I've given vastus lateralus is with newborns and Vit K.

  7. by   MAISY, RN-ER
    Always use vastus lateralus. It is the safest route for medication administration,and the patient doesn't end up sitting on it, or laying on it when they go to sleep at night. I won't let anyone give me injections anywhere else! I only use other sites in the event of rabies shots, that's it! Plus I think it is the easiest to landmark.
  8. by   MAISY, RN-ER
    I use deltoids too, only for small amounts and tetanus!
  9. by   ElvishDNP
    Delts for adult & older kids' vaccines.
    Ventroglutes for other adult meds.
    Vastus lateralis for my newborns.
    I gave Bicillin once in dorsoglutes & swore I'd never do it again if I could help it.
  10. by   lovemyjob
    Educate me please. What makes the gluts an unsafe place?

    I only do the babes so VL is all I use, but cant recall anything about the VG or DG..

  11. by   ElvishDNP
    IM injections in the dorsoglute have the potential for hitting the sciatic nerve or a larger blood vessel. Very painful & can cause long-term damage in some cases. Injecting Bicillin into a blood vessel can be fatal, so I've heard.

    Ventroglute is free from major nerves & blood vessels. And, in your average person, covered by roughly the same amt of adipose tissue. Easier to ensure you're actually getting into a muscle.