Medical procedure Question's in hospital

by troubled mind 14 Replies latest jw friends

  • troubled mind
    troubled mind

    My mom has many health problems one being she is diabetic . Last night her blood sugars dropped to 16 !!!! Thankfully my sister was awake heard a noise and went to check on mom . The paramedics had to start an IV with D-50 to bring her around .....the problem is that the EMT on his first try in insert IV broke off the catheter in her arm or vein we are not sure . He put on a tourniquet and at the hospital the doctor cut her arm open in the area looking for it , still not found . They did xray and doppler and still don't know were it went ! If it is in the vein it could travel any where Heart , brain , kidney's . Have you ever heard of this happening to anyone ? I can't believe my mom's bad luck . I am hoping the EMT was wrong and that the broken peice just fell off onto the bed , and was missed .

  • troubled mind
    troubled mind

    Any Nurses out there or EMT's that can tell me if this happens often . Do we need to be really worried ?

  • Forscher

    Never heard of it happening before.
    Assuming it got past the tourniquet, and that it had been inserted in the antecubital vein (in front of the elbow where blood draws are commonly done and EMTs are taught to start an IV, at least in my day). If it didn't get hung up somewhere, it probably traveled to the Vena Cava (the central vein in the body) and then into the heart. If it got past the heart, then it would've ended up in one of the lungs. Neither, are pleasant things to think about! I do not know if gravity would act sufficiently on it to cause it to go fall to the lowest part of the Vena Cava or the heart, but that is a possibility which comes to mind.
    Let's just say that you are talking about one very dangerous situation here that is likely to require some sort of serious surgery if and when they locate it!

  • Forscher

    Unless your mother made a very sudden and violent move during the procedure, there shouldn't be any reason I can think of why any competent EMT would've let that happen! I've been liscensed as an EMT and done a few veinipunctures myself, so I know a bit about it.

  • troubled mind
    troubled mind

    My Dad was holding mom's arm still for the EMT and mom was basically comatose . My sister said the two EMT's seemed really nervous and more scared than her or Dad . They also didn't have all their supplies in the jump kit Dad gave them his own 4x4's and tape . I wasn't there but it sounds like they were highly ineffecient .

  • choosing life
    choosing life

    I have seen this happen once in the hospital. At least that is what they thought happened. They never found anything in the woman and they later decided the catheter just fell off and got lost. The woman was fine. It would be hard to break a catheter in someone's arm, buy not impossible. I start IVs regularly and never has this even been a problem for me or anyone I worked with. I hope it was just a lost catheter and your Mom is fine.

  • Scully

    I've never seen anything like that happen. The IV catheters are very flexible and don't break easily. Good to hear that the paramedic was responsible and reported it so it could be investigated further, and that there seems to be nothing to worry about.

  • MsMcDucket
    I've never seen anything like that happen. The IV catheters are very flexible and don't break easily

    Me either Skully. I'm a nurse too, and I start IV's all the time. I even train other nurses on how to start IV's. I've never seen it happen. Now, with PICC lines, maybe, but not a regular old IV. The person starting the IV site must of been new. Nowadays, we have the retractable IV needles. I wonder if he/she just retracted the needle and catheter. One thing I don't understand is why they just didn't inject Glucagon IM (intramuscularly) into your mom's gluteus maximus.

    Next time this happens, just put some honey in her cheek. Keep checking her blood glucose until the ambulance arrives, check with the doctor about getting a glucagon injection kit for emergencies-- It is to be used when a diabetic has a low blood sugar and is unconscious.

  • crazyblondeb

    I have to argee with what scully and Mrs McDucket said. In all my years starting IVs I've never had this happen or heard of it. They are WAY too flexible. But, I'm glad they reported it, in case. Please do what Mrs McDucket said. That may actually save her life if it happens again. Which I hope it doesn't!


  • juni

    Sorry to hear about that troubledmind. Hope everything works out alright.



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