Everyone is ready for it to be over, you want to get it on the first try, your teacher wants you to get it on the first try, the animal wants you to get it on the first try, you don’t want to collapse the vein or cause a hematoma, and you don’t want to kink your catheter. The pressure is on when you place an IV catheter; even more so when it’s your first ever time on a real patient.
Placing an IV catheter is an essential skill that vets and vet techs need. Obviously, with time we will all be pros. However, for the moment it’s a skill in progress.
First of all, I would like to thank my teacher for answering my thousands of questions and taking the time to show me. She was able to guide me and create a calm environment in the middle of a chaotic dentistry class so that I was able to focus. I became so focused that there was only me doing my work on the patient in that room. I also want to thank my teacher for letting me make my own mistakes.
Secondly, taping is also an important thing I learned while placing IV catheters. Tape placement and how you both tape your catheter and wrap the tape around the animal’s leg is equally as important as placing the catheter properly. It is really a whole other art form.
On my first attempt, I had the tape on the wrong spot. On my second attempt, I kinked the catheter. On the third attempt, I did everything perfectly. Even though there is pressure all around for you to get it on the first try you still have to take your time and breathe.
We are all at school to learn, and we will all make mistakes. So try not to get too worn down if you can’t get your IV catheters in on the first try. You’ll eventually learn from your mistakes and be able to do it like a pro!