IV fluid change frequency

Specialties MICU


HI! How frequently do you change out your standard IV fluids(NS, D5W, LR, etc.)? Every 24 hours? 48? 72? When empty? Have you seen any infections that might be contributed to contaminated IV fluid? I'm updating a guideline; thanks so much for the help. JeannieM:confused: :confused:


61 Posts

For years we had to change IV solutions every 24 hours and IV tubings every 48 hours. This was changed several years ago to 72 hours for plain IV solutions and tubings. TPN remains every 24 hours due to high glucose content and possibility of bacterial growth.


15 Posts

According to the Infusion Nursing Standards of Practice - S73: "After being added to an administration set, a medication or solution should be infused or discarded within 24 hours."


Guest JeannieM

0 Posts

Thanks! This is frustrating; CDC recommendations allow for a longer hang time, the Infusion Nurses Society is still at 24 hours, and I'm ready to scream! Peers who are using longer hang times, are you seeing any increase in infection rates? I really appreciate the help.


1,577 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg Nursing.

At both hospitals at which I have been employed in my 5 years of nursing, the policy was that IV Fluids were discarded after being hung for 24 hours. We change IV tubing after 72 hours and TPN gets changed every 24 hours along with the tubing. We change central line tubing after 48 hours.

Until my hospital comes out with a policy stating otherwise, I will continue to change IV fluids every 24 hours.


20 Posts

4 of our system hospitals went with CDC reccommendations several years ago with no increase in infections.

The theory is to keep the system as intact as possible, it's when we access the system integrity that puts increased infection risk.



BadBird, BSN, RN

1,126 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care.

I agree with the 24 hr. change for all fluids, propofol is changed q12hrs. Most times IVF is changed several times in a 24 hr. period but tubing in q72hrs for IVF, Q24hr for TPN. PRBC we change after 2 units.

nimbex, RN

387 Posts

My hospital is the same as nurse Lou


8 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care & FNP.

We also change the propofol tubing q12h in the ICU I work at.


167 Posts

Same as Badbird


17 Posts

it seems that 24hrs for IV fluids is standard with the lines every 48hrs, except TPN, and actrapid which are 24hrs fluids ands lines



45 Posts

I was perturbed when I noticed that my patient's propofol tubing hadn't been changed for 48 hours! What about piggybacks? How often do you discard these? I thought it was q 24 hours. Maintenance tubing is q 72 hours. Is piggyback tubing to be changed q 24 hours? Leslie.

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