Infusion therapy in the home has been common for many years. The therapies appropriate for home infusion are numerous. The type of access device provided for the infusion is an important consideration for safe and effective care. That choice will take into consideration physician and patient preference and length of therapy. However, paramount to this decision are the characteristics of the infusate. It is essential to know the pH and osmolality of the drug as well as its potential vesicant properties. The nurse needs to act as the patient advocate to ensure that proper catheter selection is made. Patient teaching should be aimed at recognition of complications and immediate interventions to avoid problems.
Lynda S. Cook, RN, BSN, CRNI, is Nurse Manager, CuraScript Infusion Pharmacy, Greensboro, NC.
Address for correspondence: CuraScript Infusion Pharmacy, 6909 International Drive, Suite 108, Greensboro, NC 27409.