Jump to content

Starting IV's

Posted

We're starting IV's on each other this week and i'd like to ask you guys for some tips. We practiced once on the dummies but I know it will be way different when we start it on each other. We need 3 successful tries before the second semester in January. Thanks a lot!:)

My father was an anesthesiologist (started lots of IVs), and his advice to me on the subject was to make sure you get the tourniquet really tight -- he used to say, "If you get the tourniquet tight enough, you can stick anyone." Spend some time perfecting your tourniquet technique! Note that this does not apply to little old people -- often a tight tourniquet will blow their fragile veins. I've known some really good "stickers" who didn't use a tourniquet at all on little old people. Good luck!

Everyone is really scared about learning to do "sticks," and everyone survives ...

Aneroo, LPN

Specializes in Cath Lab, OR, CPHN/SN, ER.

I remember our lab on IV starts, and the teacher said nothing to us about this....Once you get your flashback, DON'T change the angle on the needle! -Andrea

maire, ASN, RN

Specializes in Adult Med-Surg and Rehab. Has 13 years experience.

My school doesn't teach us how to start IVs. :imbar

I hate to hijack a thread, but is it just my school or what? Anyone else have to learn this skill OJT??

klone, MSN, RN

Specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership. Has 15 years experience.

OMGosh, I cannot believe that other schools actually have the students practice invasive procedures on each other! The ONLY thing we did on each other was accuchecks. That would absolutely scare the bejesus out of me. What would happen if you refused?

RainDreamer, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU. Has 13 years experience.

We've done accuchecks and injections on each other, but no IVs. I would hate that, yowchie!

We did lots of practice IV sticks in the lab though. Then the first time I tried to start one on a patient I blew the vein, I felt so terrible :crying2: Really discouraged after that and didn't think I'd ever want to try again. But then I did a clinical in the ER and the ER nurse I was with made me start an IV. He helped me through it.... guided my hand and we got the IV started! Since then I've started 4 IVs by myself and I still don't feel confident about it. So many people say it just takes tons and tons of practice. We'll get there!!

OMGosh, I cannot believe that other schools actually have the students practice invasive procedures on each other! The ONLY thing we did on each other was accuchecks. That would absolutely scare the bejesus out of me. What would happen if you refused?

We practiced injections on each other, and will practice IVs in our third semester. It's not required, and you have to sign a release to do it.

I look at it this way: I would MUCH rather have my first go at it on a fellow student, who is not sick/freaked out/facing God only knows what on top of having a first timer sticking them, than a pt. We even had the opportunity to give each other NG tubes. It doesn't hurt THAT bad, and is worth the experience! As to infectious disease issues..so long as you are using proper precautions, I don't see how it would be any riskier than what we will deal with every day once we graduate.

Deana

My school doesn't teach us how to start IVs. :imbar

I hate to hijack a thread, but is it just my school or what? Anyone else have to learn this skill OJT??

Our school is not teaching us either! I was disappointed to hear that news.

We learned how to start IV's but not on each other. I think it cost too much to insure us all.

My first IV start was in the ER on a 16 year old with large veins. I got in on the first try. Whew - I was so scared.

steph

RainDreamer, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU. Has 13 years experience.

Ever since my first IV insertions (some on good veins, some on not so good) .... I catch myself looking at people's arms now, thinking *dang, what nice veins!* :chuckle

My father was an anesthesiologist (started lots of IVs), and his advice to me on the subject was to make sure you get the tourniquet really tight -- he used to say, "If you get the tourniquet tight enough, you can stick anyone." Spend some time perfecting your tourniquet technique! Note that this does not apply to little old people -- often a tight tourniquet will blow their fragile veins. I've known some really good "stickers" who didn't use a tourniquet at all on little old people. Good luck!

Everyone is really scared about learning to do "sticks," and everyone survives ...

Thanks for the tip. I will definitely try that. Good thing we don't have little old people in the class, although my partner is a little young person. She's 23 but she only weighs 90lbs. I looked at her veins and she have little tiny ones. I shouldn't complain though since I have tiny veins too. In the past, everytime I need to get an IV, the nurses always seem to have a problem. So they told me the next time I need one, just ask for the anesthesiologist or the nurse anesthetist. That saved me a lot of pain.

OMGosh, I cannot believe that other schools actually have the students practice invasive procedures on each other! The ONLY thing we did on each other was accuchecks. That would absolutely scare the bejesus out of me. What would happen if you refused?

We signed a waiver in the beginning of the semester releasing the school from any responsibility in case something happened. I was more freaked out when i found out during our welcoming reception that we will be doing NG tubes versus the IV starts. But NG wasn't too bad and I survived it. I guess we can refuse it but nobody has refused since were very closely monitored by our instructor.

NYCRN16

Specializes in ER, PACU.

To the students who are worried that they are not learning how to put IV's in during clinicals...

In my school we were not allowed to stick each other in lab or anything like that, so we couldnt learn there, and we were given "student nurse guideline" packets by the hospitals we did clinicals in that specifically stated that students were not allowed to draw blood or start IV's and if you were caught doing it you would be dismissed. I was very dissapointed that I was not going to learn this in school and thought that it would be a great disadvantage when I was going to look for a job.

Turns out it really doesnt matter, I was still hired in ER as a new grad, and they knew that I had no experience starting IV's.

The truth is, a skill like this is just what it is..A skill. Anyone can be trained to do it and with practice you will get good at it. What is important is your nursing knowledge that you are gaining as an RN. The skills will come with time.

tiroka03, LPN

Specializes in LPN. Has 18 years experience.

As an LPN, we never learned IV starting in school. However, on the job, we have an IV inservice every year. We all have to start on IV on each other each year. If you are really really the need for torture, you can repeat the class as it's offered semi-annually.

CarVsTree

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU. Has 4 years experience.

My school doesn't teach us how to start IVs. :imbar

I hate to hijack a thread, but is it just my school or what? Anyone else have to learn this skill OJT??

We also will not learn how to start IV's in school. It is illegal in PA for anyone but an RN (I think, maybe LPN's can as well) to start an IV in hospital. We won't even learn venipuncture. I'll learn that in my new job as a tech in December though.

Altra, BSN, RN

Specializes in Emergency & Trauma/Adult ICU.

We also will not learn how to start IV's in school. It is illegal in PA for anyone but an RN (I think, maybe LPN's can as well) to start an IV in hospital. We won't even learn venipuncture. I'll learn that in my new job as a tech in December though.

Suemom2kay,

I'm also in PA ... we learn venipuncture & IV starts in critical care. I've already done venipuncture in my job as a tech ... I was really "behind" other techs who are students at another nursing school in my area - they learn venipuncture much earlier in their program. If you have a source of info about the illegality of students or others starting IVs in PA, could you send me a PM? Thanks much.

CarVsTree

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU. Has 4 years experience.

I don't have any concrete information re: IV starts. Its just what I've been told. Perhaps I've misunderstood and its a school/hospital policy. All I know is that its out of my control so I'm not sweating it.

twarlik

Specializes in CICu, ICU, med-surg.

We learned how to do blood draws and IV starts during our first semester. Talking with other students, my understanding is that this is pretty unusual. The nurses during clinicals are always surprised when we say that we are allowed to do these sorts of things.

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.