Marker on syringes

  1. Hi All,
    Does anyone know if permanent marker is okay on plastic syringes as long as giving med/vaccine soon after drawing up? (i.e. leaching through plastic to med?) I cannot find any information on the subject, only on not using permanent marker on IV bags. Thanks for any input!
  2. Visit kiwigirl123 profile page

    About kiwigirl123

    Joined: Apr '10; Posts: 2


  3. by   Ruthiegal
    use a small piece of tape instead....
  4. by   labrador4122
    I use a permanent marker on IV bags, but not on syringes that takes too much time
  5. by   monkeymoon
    I've used permanent market on IV bags too.
  6. by   Forever Sunshine
    I have put a small dot with a sharpie on a oral syringe to show myself where to draw up to the 0.5ml mark since it was not clearly stated and my eyes aren't the best in a hallway with poor lighting at 10pm at night. lol
  7. by   Kingbandit
    Our policy is tape or pre-printed labels only, even iv bags. No one will give me any rational except its policy. I still use my sharpie on the tape.
  8. by   ayla2004
    i use a small sticky label folded over so i can see the markings

    why use [ermant marker on iv bags what do u write on the bags.

    if i label a bag i use a sticky label or if ive added a 2nd medicine to a bag we have speical labels
  9. by   rotteluvr31
    are you writing on the syringe to identify what's in it? we will tape the syringe to the bottle we drew from, after all, I may not need that ativan right now... but in 15 minutes I might need it in a big hurry... Not always the best practice I know, but sometimes you have to think ahead.
  10. by   kiwigirl123
    Thanks for all of the replies. I should have been more specific to avoid confusion, sorry! In the past when I gave vaccines I wrote a small stripe in permanent marker on the syringe barrel to remind me which vaccines are subcu. A small part of the marker was in the vaccine area. I didn't ever think twice about it possibly leaching through but now am worrying a lot over it. Hindsight is 20/20 but I wish that I had used a different 'reminder' for myself. Thanks!
  11. by   MissIt
    I saw a nurse today make a little X on the bottom of the plunger. I don't think there would be any danger in that. Or you could just put a little piece of tape on the SQ ones.
  12. by   IVRUS
    Quote from BumblebeeRN
    I use a permanent marker on IV bags, but not on syringes that takes too much time

    Okay, here's the real skinny... Do NOT write on IV bags unless it has a label on it, and the label is what you are writing on!!
    When you use a magic marker to write on bags, the marker leaches into the bag and then goes into your patient.
    In addition, writing with a pen is no-no, and you can easily puncture the bag.
    Your employing institution has, or should have. these policies in place... And they are there for a reason. If your pt is harmed.. Is the hospital going to back you up for deviating from standard practice... NO!
  13. by   Mr.Sandman
    Hey IVRUS,

    Help me out & quote your source to not writing on IV bags. Do you know of a scientific study that was done?


  14. by   Asystole RN
    Quote from Mr.Sandman
    Hey IVRUS,

    Help me out & quote your source to not writing on IV bags. Do you know of a scientific study that was done?



    I would like to see this also.

    The whole magic marker bleeds through the bag is an old wives tale. The ink in magic markers is non toxic and usually has a resin, colorant, and a solvent that usually happens to be an alcohol. Old IV bags and medical plastics in general were typically made of polyvinyl chloride, a plastic that is actually relatively porous and does leech chemicals into it's contents. Due to the concern of DEHP leeching into the contents of the IV bags made of PVC there was a major push to eliminate PVC from medical supplies in favor of polypropylene and other alternatives. Unlike PVC, polypropylene is an inert plastic that does not readily react with chemicals, leech them, or allow them to readily cross it's membrane. Today you are as likely to find PVC in healthcare as you are latex. Yes you might run across an odd object here or there but they are definitely rare items.

    OSHA requires that chemotherapy and other hazardous waste be disposed in 5mil thick polypropylene bags (think the red and yellow bags we see). Most "food grade" pkastic bags that you purchase are in the 5mil thickness range (think a bag of nuts). The average IV bag is much thicker than 5mils, usually closer to the 8-10mil range. You cannot tell me that a 5mil polypropylene bag that can safely contain chemotherapy agents is somehow susceptible to the humble non-toxic magic marker.

    Twenty years ago I would have agreed and said that there may possibly, maybe, in rare circumstances, be the slightest chance that some magic marker ink could leech into the bag if the bag was dipped into a vat of boiling ink and left for 3 days. Today, not so much.