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Intraosseous Vascular Access for Alert Patients

Hunsaker, Stacie MSN, RN, CEN, CPEN; Hillis, Darren PharmD, BCPS

AJN, American Journal of Nursing: November 2013 - Volume 113 - Issue 11 - p 34–39
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000437110.65929.70
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Overview: Nurses are often faced with the challenge of starting an IV line in a patient who is dehydrated, has suffered trauma, or is in shock. Even the efforts of the most skilled clinician may fail, while valuable time is lost. Intraosseous access is a rapid, safe, and effective route for delivering fluids and medications, and is recommended by numerous professional and specialty organizations for both pediatric and adult patients. Yet many clinicians remain unaware of the procedure. This article outlines the procedure and devices used, describes support for use in the literature, and discusses various considerations and nursing implications.

This article describes how nurses can use this fast, safe, and effective route for delivering fluids and medications when IV access fails.

Stacie Hunsaker is a regional nursing education consultant for Intermountain Healthcare in Provo, UT. Darren Hillis is a clinical pharmacist at DePaul Health Center in Bridgeton, MO; at the time of writing, he was a pharmacist at Intermountain Utah Valley Regional Medical Center in Provo. Contact author: Stacie Hunsaker, stacie.hunsaker@imail.org. The authors and planners have disclosed no potential conflicts of interest, financial or otherwise. AJN’s peer review process has determined this article to be objective and free of commercial bias. Use of photos and videos does not imply endorsement.

© 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. All rights reserved.