Using Butterfly Needles for Blood Draws and IVs
A butterfly needle is a device that consists of a hypodermic needle, two flexible “wings,” a flexible transparent tubing, and a connector that is used to draw blood from a vein or deliver intravenous (IV) therapy. Butterfly needles have some advantages over straight needles.
Butterfly needles are used by phlebotomists to obtain blood samples for various tests and can be left in a vein for up to seven days if properly secured. Butterfly needles are measured in gauges and typically range in size from 18-gauge to 27-gauge.
Why would you use a butterfly needle?
When a person gives blood, such as for a blood bank, a butterfly needle is commonly used because it has flexible tubing attached to the end that makes it easy to connect to other tubing to collect blood.
How do you insert a butterfly needle?
- To hold the needle, place the plastic “wings” between your thumb and first finger.
- Hold the needle with the hole (the bevel) facing up and the sharp point down.
- Always enter the vein with the needle pointing toward the heart.
When should you not use a butterfly needle?
Butterfly needles should only be used for IV infusions of five hours or less, even if the correct size needle is used. If the needle is not correctly placed, it can become blocked during treatment.
Is a butterfly needle less painful?
Because butterfly needles are often less painful than straight needles, you may encounter patients who specifically request that you use one. What’s important is that you use the proper gauge to complete the job effectively, quickly, and painlessly as possible.
What Color Is a Butterfly’s blood?
The process of pumping blood is slow: it takes about eight minutes for an insect’s blood to circulate completely. Bug blood, like human blood, transports nutrients and hormones to the insect’s cells. Its greenish or yellowish color comes from the pigments in the plants that the bug eats.
What is the smallest needle to draw blood?
The smallest gauge, 25, is mostly used on children. 1 The short needle length allows the phlebotomist to insert it at a shallow angle, which can make it easier to use. There is usually a safety device that slides over the needle after it has been used to reduce the risk of needle stick.
How do you stick a needle in a vein?
Insert the needle into your vein with the needle bevel (opening) facing up, at a 15 to 35 degree angle, and always in the direction of the heart; the more perpendicular the needle is to the injection site, the more likely it is to stick through the vein rather than into it.
What is the correct needle position to be inserted for venipuncture?
Remove the tourniquet when the last tube to be drawn is filling and the needle forms a 15 to 30 degree angle with the surface of the arm. Quickly insert the needle through the skin and into the lumen of the vein, avoiding trauma and excessive probing.
How much is a butterfly needle?
u201cHey, why aren’t you using one of those little butterfly needles?u201d I asked. u201cOh, the butterfly needles cost $1.u201d
Which vein is the first choice for drawing blood?
Because it is less close to arteries and nerves in the arm, the median cubital vein is the first choice for blood draws, followed by the more lateral cephalic vein and finally the basilic vein in the medial arm.
Do butterfly needles take longer?
Cons of Larger Butterfly Needle Gauges Hemolysis would invalidate blood samples for certain lab tests, so a gauge size of 25 or larger is only recommended for infants or patients with difficult-to-access veins. Takes longer: A smaller needle draws blood at a slower rate than a larger one.
Do smaller needles hurt more?
Smile when the doctor pulls out a large needle; research from Oxford University shows that larger, thicker needles hurt less than smaller, thinner ones.
Why do thicker needles hurt less?
The gauge, or width, of a needle has a lot to do with how painful it is when it pierces your skin; unsurprisingly, the narrower the needle (which, ironically, means it has a larger gauge number), the less it hurts.