Subcues for Dummies

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 10:32 am


An alternative is to fill a glass or other container with water to a temperature 5 degrees over your temperature goal. Leave it there for 10 minutes. Check the temp. You may have to play around until you get the right temp. Submersion this way should help to equalize the temp throughout.

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 11:39 am


I do as Lynx suggests. I fill up a measuring cup with very hot water and drop the syringe in that with the infusion set hanging over the edge.

I wait until it's 'baby bottle warm.'

I give 20ccs, and no more than 30, when I give subcues.

Yes, I've had a pig shake the needle out. I hold the needle in with one hand and keep the pig in a cuddle cup so movement is restricted.

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Amy0204
We miss our sweet Oreo

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 11:44 am


Wow...I feel like I probably overwhelmed poor Oreo; she was getting 40-60 ccs, although they really made a difference in how she felt.

I used to warm up the filled syringe (no needle) in the microwave for about 15 seconds, then shake to make sure the warm water was equally disbursed. Sometimes, I'd let it sit for another few minutes, if it needed to cool off. I assume this worked ok, because after the first time, she never fussed too much again (except when the needle was first inserted). There were a few occasions when she'd start to move around and the needle feel out. Like Mum, I tried to hold it in place with one hand.

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sef1268

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 11:59 am


Thanks. I was trying not to hold the needle "in" too much, but I guess I'll have to start doing that.

Mum -- so, if you restrict mobility, what is the advantage of the infusion set for you? (I don't mean that to sound sarcastic in any way; just trying to figure out what way will work best for Zachary...butterfly or just a small gauge needle on a syringe).

Thanks again.

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 12:51 pm


The advantage is that there's flexibility in the infusion set. I don't keep the pig totally still, just somewhat. If the pig moved (and the pig always moves!) with a needle on the end of a syringe, I'd be worried about where the needle ended up.

I just put a finger over the needle to make sure it doesn't fall out - and to keep it the right way up.

So, I have one hand on the pig's back, with a finger over the needle, and the other hand presses down on the syringe. The pig can certainly move around and therefore doesn't feel totally restricted.

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sef1268

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 12:59 pm


Got it! That makes sense now. :)

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 4:16 pm


You can definitely overheat it if you microwave warm it. So use care whichever method you settle on.

Good luck!

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sef1268

Post   » Mon Dec 24, 2007 9:42 am


If you have a subcue where the needle comes out, or you have to take it out for some reason in mid-fluids, you always start over with a new butterfly needle, right?

I ruined two sets this morning (one wasn't in properly; the second time I managed to jab my finger with it), and had to give up because I'm running too low on them. Argh.

Does anyone know if they make a 28-gauge butterfly set? I know it would take longer to administer, but after getting jabbed with the 25-gauge this morning, I know they can still hurt.

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ShadowBlasko
Supporter in '05

Post   » Mon Dec 24, 2007 4:10 pm


Don't feel bad if it is hard for you.

Mistress™ does SubQ a lot when dealing with wildlife, and every situation is unique. Just last night she broke a 22 gauge trying to give Bianca her SubQ, and Bianca also bled more than any piggie we have had to give injections to before.

I swear that piggie has Squirrel Skin. It was next to impossible to get that needle in there.

Squirrels, btw, have amazingly tough skin, and will turn a 20 gauge needle just about every time you try it.

And don't feel bad about injecting yourself. It happens here on a regular basis.

(You think piggies are tough, try a 20 pound ~very~ angry raccoon, who has opposable thumbs and a serious attitude!)

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Mon Dec 24, 2007 5:56 pm


No, I've had many a poor stick with the same needle. I always use just one needle for the subcue, no matter how often I have to stick the pig (or myself).


A 25-gauge needle really is adequate - it's a very small needle (and yes, I know it hurts when you stick yourself!)

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sef1268

Post   » Wed Jan 02, 2008 11:33 pm


Thanks. I've been using 23g and they're working pretty well.

Does anyone know why some sets have a "safety clip" on them? Is that to cover the needle for disposal? It's a white clip that slides up and down the tubing, and looks like it can be clipped right over the top of the butterfly needle (but not sure why).

Another dumb question -- is there is a certain time that subcues are better administered than others? For instance, is there any reason why it can't be given in late evening? (right before bedtime). I could have sworn my vet said not to give fluids too late in the evening, but can't remember what the reason was. Does that sound right? (maybe I misunderstood?)

I would have thought this would get easier, but...no.

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Thu Jan 03, 2008 11:32 am


I'm not familiar with an optimal time to give subcues. If doing them twice daily, I pretty much would do them at 7am and again at 7pm - ish!

Can't help you on the clip issue - my butterfly sets don't have them.

Talishan
You can quote me

Post   » Thu Jan 03, 2008 5:40 pm


"It's a white clip that slides up and down the tubing"

If it's what I'm thinking it is, you can use it to pinch the tube and stop the flow of fluid. That is, if you have an infusion set on a stand, with a (human) patient on IV, you can snap the narrow end of the slit in the middle of the white thing over the fluid tubing. Dispensing to the lower part of the set and thus into the patient immediately stops.

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sef1268

Post   » Mon Jan 07, 2008 11:45 am


Here is the type I'm using:
Image

Talishan, does that look like the type you're thinking of? [ETA: after reading the online description, it sounds like the white thing is supposed to somehow slip over the needle as you withdraw it from the vein-?]

Another dumb question. Does it matter if the needle doesn't go all the way in? There are times when I have it in, but because Zachary was moving around, I didn't get the needle all the way "pushed in" (up to the butterfly part). In fact, most times I don't get the entire needle in. It doesn't seem to leak out, but I just wondered if it matters if part of the needle is sticking out when you give fluids-?

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sef1268

Post   » Mon Jan 07, 2008 2:22 pm


While I'm on the subject...I've been doing some comparison shopping on winged infusion sets. So far, the cheapest that I've found online are these, from KV Vet. Even with shipping ($5.00), they still only cost around $.84 each for a dozen.

Locally, I'm paying $1.43 each for the Unolok's, and $1.00 each for regular sets from the vet.

Anyone find any better pricing?

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sef1268

Post   » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:43 pm


[Is it a sign of insanity when you start having 1-sided conversations on a forum? *snort*]

Has anyone here ever used a 27-gauge infusion set? They do exist. Hard to find, but there are two manufaturers that make them: Terumo (good luck reaching them directly) and Excel. I contacted Excel and they are going to send my vet's office a few samples for me to try. They might be too small, but I'd like to at least give them a try (since Zachary is having to have subcues twice a day, probably for the rest of his life).

Okay, I'll let someone else talk now.

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sosumi

Post   » Tue Jan 08, 2008 5:06 pm


I think the 27 gauge would be too small.

I used the 23 gauge. It is difficult to push the fluid in with that small of a needle, but I am a newbie when it comes to sub Qs.

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Jan 08, 2008 5:35 pm


I use 25 gauge, and it takes some strength to get the fluid through a needle that small :-p

I think 27 would be very, very slow. But who knows!

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sef1268

Post   » Tue Jan 08, 2008 10:29 pm


I don't really care too much about slow; Zachary has a plate of veggies to distract him while I'm giving fluids. I'm more interested in it not being painful. The 23g makes him really uncomfortable, and I don't see much difference between it and the 25g. I just wonder if the 27g would be a large enough needle to puncture the skin (and not bend or break).

Guess there's only one way to find out.

Sorry if I'm asking too many questions. My comfort level with subcues just isn't "there" yet.

HollyT
Get on your bike.

Post   » Tue Jan 08, 2008 10:47 pm


The faster the less stressful IMO. Please use a sharps container (can be an old can with a lid) when disposing of used needles. Do not place directly in the trash. When your can gets full take them to a designated place- maybe your vets? My husband just takes them to work. It's just a safety issue I try to respect.

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