How to Insert an IV - Top Tips from Nurses

The following content is for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to substitute for professional medical training.

There are few activities which transcend your entire nursing career the way inserting an IV does. And while the general method is universal, there are some helpful tips and tricks you can use to ensure your insertion is spot on the first time, every time.

We recently asked our Facebook fans to share what their best tips were for inserting an IV. Here are the top responses. Have a tip of your own? Comment below and add to the list!

1.  Ask your patient where nurses have usually inserted an IV when having previous procedures. Listen to the patient! They will guide you. Then be calm!! - Kelly J.

2.  Make sure that you are 100% sure that vein is good. Don't dig, ever. Check and check again before you stick! - Lyndse G.

3.  Search by feel thoroughly before deciding on location, pull the skin back slightly and go with the feel, not the look. - Dianne W.

4.  Don't EVER take your gloves off! Many old school nurses take them off or rip the finger off to feel for veins. That's how horrible health risks happen. Just get in the habit from the get-go to keep those gloves on!!! - Anna R.

5.  Don't tap or slap. I stroke the arm from the hand upward with tourniquet in place. Makes those veins pop up nicely. - Janet E.

6.  Ask for help if needed. No shame in asking ... patient's safety is the priority! - Brenda P.

7.  Use a blood pressure cuff instead of a tourniquet. Pump it up to 60 mmHg. Veins will pop up everywhere. - Tamara S.

8.  Take your time. - Sarah J.

9.  Be confident and have faith in yourself that you can do it! - Jezzreel P.

10.  Practice. - Andrea W.

What tips do you have to share for inserting an IV?

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