Relevant Peripheral Intravenous Cannulation – A Comprehensive Guide

Peripheral intravenous cannulation is a crucial skill for healthcare professionals involved in patient care. It allows for the administration of medications, fluids, and blood products, as well as the collection of blood samples. In this blog post, we will provide a detailed guide on relevant peripheral intravenous cannulation techniques and best practices.


Peripheral intravenous cannulation is the process of inserting a catheter into a peripheral vein, typically in the arm, to deliver various medical treatments. It is a common procedure performed by nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals. Proper technique and adherence to guidelines are essential to ensure patient safety and minimize complications.

Step-by-Step Guide to Peripheral Intravenous Cannulation

1. Gather all the necessary equipment, including sterile gloves, a tourniquet, an antiseptic solution, a peripheral venous catheter, tape, and a dressing.

2. Explain the procedure to the patient and obtain informed consent. Ensure the patient’s arm is adequately supported and exposed.

3. Apply a tourniquet a few inches above the intended insertion site to facilitate vein visualization and engorgement.

4. Palpate the chosen vein with your non-dominant hand to assess its size, depth, and direction. Select an appropriate vein for cannulation, usually a straight and accessible one.

5. Prepare the insertion site by cleaning it with an antiseptic solution. Start cleaning from the center and move outward in a circular motion. Allow the area to dry completely.

6. Put on sterile gloves and open the catheter packaging, ensuring not to touch the sterile surfaces.

7. Use your non-dominant hand to anchor the selected vein by pulling the skin taut below the intended insertion point.

8. With the bevel facing upward, carefully insert the catheter into the vein at a shallow angle (10-30 degrees). Keep the needle steady while advancing the catheter slowly.

9. Once the needle enters the vein, observe blood return in the flashback chamber. Lower the angle of insertion, advance the catheter a little further, and gently withdraw the needle.

10. Stabilize the catheter with your non-dominant hand and push it into the vein until the hub is flush with the insertion site.

11. Secure the catheter in place using tape or a transparent dressing. Label the dressing with the date, time, and size of the catheter.

12. Connect the catheter hub to the appropriate IV tubing, ensuring a secure and sterile connection.

13. Flush the catheter with a saline solution to ensure proper patency. Remove the tourniquet.

14. Document the procedure, including the catheter size, insertion site, and any complications or patient discomfort.

Best Practices for Peripheral Intravenous Cannulation

– Always use aseptic technique throughout the procedure to minimize the risk of infection.

– Choose the appropriate catheter size based on the patient’s age, condition, and treatment requirements.

– Opt for the smallest gauge catheter possible to minimize patient discomfort and the likelihood of complications.

– Maintain proper hand hygiene before, during, and after the procedure.

– Educate the patient on possible sensations during the cannulation process and encourage them to communicate any discomfort.

– Monitor the insertion site regularly for signs of complications like infiltration, phlebitis, or infection.


Peripheral intravenous cannulation is a fundamental skill for healthcare professionals. By following the step-by-step guide and adhering to best practices, practitioners can ensure successful and safe cannulation. Regular training, experience, and attention to detail are key to developing expertise in this essential procedure.

Leave a Comment