Trick of the Trade: Bend the IV angiocatheter
You identify a great external jugular (EJ) vein to cannulate for IV access. You are having a hard time keeping the angle of the angiocatheter aimed at a shallow angle because the mandible is in the way. This is typical of patients with chubby necks (eg. pediatric patients) or who are unable to rotate their neck.
Trick of the Trade: Bend the angle of the angiocatheter
Bend the proximal 1/3 portion of the needle slightly about 10-15 degrees. This allows you to approach the EJ vein at a shallow angle without hitting the mandible. Once you get a flashback of blood, feed the catheter as you normally would.
Tip: Don’t bend right at the hub because it partly obstructs your ability to feed the cathether.
Thanks for Dr. Catilin Bilotti (UCSF-SFGH chief resident) for the video and tip!
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