IV stands for intravenous therapy. Quite simply, it is the delivery of liquids directly into a vein. It can be used for a number of reasons including:
- Medication administration
- Blood transfusions
- Parenteral nutrition
IVs are the fastest way to administer fluids throughout the body, making them highly effective in critical situations. In addition, they are used when a patient is too ill to take the drug orally or when taking a drug orally would cause the body harm.
In most cases, a peripheral IV line is inserted into the skin of the arm or hand, as these are most accessible. A cannula sticks out of your arm, through which the chosen liquid is inserted. IVs may also be inserted into a central line, such as a large vein in the chest or neck. Medication may be administered from a drip line, in which a bag of fluid is placed on a pole next to the patient, or as a single injection.
Our nurses are trained in identifying and preventing IV complications, which may include:
- Fluid overload
- Electrolyte imbalance
If you show any of the signs or symptoms of these problems, your nurse will contact your doctor immediately for consultation.