Intravenous cannulation is becoming one of the most common procedures in healthcare as increasing numbers of patients are treated for acute and chronic illnesses. The use of an intravenous cannula is not without risk, so it is essential that the healthcare practitioner can justify why the patient requires cannulation, as well as being able to safely manage and provide ongoing care for patients with the device. This article provides an overview of intravenous cannulation, including the selection of appropriate cannulation sites, identification of the different types and sizes of cannula used, and cannula maintenance. Specific complications related to intravenous cannulation are discussed and guidance is given on how to recognise and avoid potential complications to ensure that practice is safe and effective.
Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2016.e10315Correspondence
All articles are subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software
Received: 22 October 2015
Accepted: 21 January 2016
Published online: 13 August 2016
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