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A 25-year-old female asked:

What is the difference between iv infiltration and iv phlebitis?

3 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Nick (Donald) Morrison
Phlebology 31 years experience
Cause: When medicine or fluid from an IV leaks out of the vein into the tissue it is called an IV infiltration, this may lead to an irritation then inflammation of the vein and tissues called a phlebitis. For sure the IV was taken out and now the arm will need to be seen by a doctor. Sometimes all is needed is warm moist packs to the area to help absorb the fluid but doctor will decide.
Dr. Marie Wilson Marshall
Pediatrics 35 years experience
Redness: Infiltrate is IV fliud escape in surrounding skin not redness or fever, phelebitis involves redness and often fever.
Dr. James Isobe
Phlebology 55 years experience
Outcome: Iv infiltration occurs when the needle or catheter dislodges from its position within the vein, allowing IV fluid to enter the subq tissue, resulting in swelling of the surrounding tissue. Iv phlebitis is inflammation of the vein wall due to the catheter irritation or solution placed into the vein, resulting in a cord like feel to the vein with redness.

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Last updated Jan 31, 2017

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