objectives. Differentiate between local and systemic complicationsDescribe the signs and symptoms of eight local complicationsIdentify prompt treatment for local and systemic complicationsIdentify INS Standards of practice rating infiltrationList three risk factors for phlebitisIdentify organisms responsible for septicemia related to infusion therapyIdentify prevention techniques for the six systemic complications.
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1. Complication of Intravenous Therapy Chapter 9
2. objectives Differentiate between local and systemic complications
Describe the signs and symptoms of eight local complications
Identify prompt treatment for local and systemic complications
Identify INS Standards of practice rating infiltration
List three risk factors for phlebitis
Identify organisms responsible for septicemia related to infusion therapy
Identify prevention techniques for the six systemic complications
3. Local complication Hematoma: formations resulting from the infiltration of blood into the tissues at the venipuncture site
Causes: nicking the vein during an unsuccessful venipuncture attempt, discontinuing the I.V. cannula or needle without pressure, applying a tourniquet too tightly above a previously attempted venipuncture site
4. Hematoma cont Signs/symptoms: discoloration of the skin, site swelling and discomfort, inability to advance the cannula all the way into the vein during insertion, resistance to positive pressure during the lick flushing procedure
Prevention and treatment: refer to page 360
Document observable ecchymotic areas
5. Thrombosis Catheter-related obstructions can be categorized as mechanical or non-thrombotic ( 42% of all obstructions) or thrombotic (58% of all obstructions),
Signs/symptoms: fever and malaise, slowed or stopped infusion rate, inability to flush licking device
Prevention/treatment: refer to page 362
6. Thrombosis Documentation: document the change of infusion rate, the steps taken to solve the problem, and the end result. Chart new IV sites. It’ patency, and the size of the catheter used
7. phlebitis An inflammation of the vein in which the endothelial cells of the venous wall become irritated and cells roughen, allowing platelets to adhere and predispose the vein to inflammation-induced phlebitis
8. Phlebitis cont Signs/symptoms: redness at site, site warm to touch, local swelling, palpable cord along the vein, sluggish infusion rate, increase in basal temperature of 1 degree C or more
Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 367 to 369
Documentation: site assessment, phlebitis rating (1,2,3 or 4), physician notification, and treatment
9. Thrombophlebitis Thrombosis and inflammation.
Signs/symptoms: sluggish flow rate, edema in the limbs, tender and cordlike vein, site warm to touch, visible red line above venipunture site, diminished arterial pulses, and mottling and cyanosis of the extremities
Prevention/treatment: refer to page 370
10. Infiltration Inadvertent administration of a nonvesicant solution into surrounding tissue
Signs/symptoms: coolness of skin around site, taut skin, dependent edema, absence of blood backflow, a pinkish blood return, infusion rate slows but the fluid continues to infuse
11. Infiltration cont Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 372 to374
Documentation: assessment findings, any written and verbal communications, nursing and medical interventions, and patient response patterns
12. Extravasation The inadvertent administration of a vesicant solution into surrounding tissue
Signs/symptoms: complaints of pain or burning; swelling proximal to or distal to the IV site; puffiness of the dependent part of the limb; skin tightness at the venipuncture site; blanching and coolness of the skin; slow or stopped infusion; damp or wet dressing
13. Extravasation cont Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 376 to 378
Documentation: document assessment and interventions. Include the vascular access device type, insertion site, name of medication or solution, and how it was infused.
14. Local infection Microbial contamination of the cannula or infusate
Signs/symptoms: redness and swelling at the site; possible exudate of purulent material; increased quantity of white blood cells; elevated temperature
Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 384 & 385
15. Local infection cont Documentation: assessment of site; culture technique; sources of culture; physician notification; and any treatment initiated
16. Venous spasm A sudden involuntary contraction of a vein or an artery resulting in temporary cessation of blood flow through a vessel.
Signs/symptoms: sharp pain at the IV site that travels up the arm, which is caused by a piercing stream of fluid that irritates or shocks the vein wall; slowing of the infusion
Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 385 & 386
17. Venous spasms cont Documentation: patient complaints, duration of complaints, treatment, and length of time to resolve the problem
18. Systemic Complication Septicemia: a febrile disease process that results from the presence of microorganisms or their toxic products in the circulatory system
S/S: fluctuating fever, tremors, chattering teeth, profuse cold sweat, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, tachycardia, increased respirations or hyperventilation, altered mental status, hypotension
Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 387 & 388
19. Septicemia cont Documentation: document s/s assessed; physician notification, all treatments instituted.
20. Fluid overload & Pulmonary edema Caused by infusing excessive amounts of isotonic or hypertonic crystalloid solutions tot rapidly, failure to monitor the IV infusion or too-rapid infusion of any fluid in a patient compromised by cardiopulmonary or renal disease
S/S: restlessness, headache, increased in pulse rate, weight gain over a short period of time, cough, presence of edema, hypertension, wide variance between intake and output, distended neck veins, SOB
21. Fluid overload & Pulmonary edema cont Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 390 & 391
Documentation: pt assessment, notification of physician, and treatments instituted by physician order
22. Air embolism Air entering the central vein, which is quickly trapped in the blood as it flows forward. Prevention is the key.
S/S: complaints of palpitations, lightheadedness and weakness, pulmonary findings: dyspnea, cyanosis, tachypnea, expiratory, wheezes, cough, and pulmonary edema. Cardiovascular: “mill wheel” murmur; weak, thready pulse; tachycardia; substernal chest pain; hypotension; and jugular venous distention. Neurologic findings: change in mental status, confusion, coma, anxiousness, and seizures
23. Air embolism cont Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 391 & 392
Documentation: pt assessment, nursing intervention, physician notification, and treatment
24. Speed shock Occurs when a foreign substance usually a medication is rapidly introduced into the circulation
S/S: dizziness, facial flushing, headache, tightness in the chest, hypotension, irregular pulse, progression of shock.
Prevention/treatment: refer to page 393
Documentation: medication or fluid administered and the signs and symptoms the pt reported, physician notification, treatment initiated and the patient response
25. Catheter embolism A piece of the catheter breaks off and travels through the vascular system
S/S: sharp sudden pain at the IV site, minimal blood return, rough and uneven catheter noted on removal, cyanosis, chest pain, tachycardia, hypotension
Prevention/treatment: refer to pages 394 & 395