IV Therapy at Home
Intravenous therapy at home is a way to receive IV treatment your doctor has prescribed, without having to go to a hospital or clinic. Home intravenous therapy is a safe and effective alternative to in-patient care. A thorough patient assessment and home assessment is done before starting home IV therapy.
How is intravenous therapy done?
A patient receiving IV therapy is administered medication or fluid through a needle or tube, called a catheter, that goes directly into a vein beneath the surface of the skin. A home health nurse may help give the medication or fluid. In some cases a caregiver, or a family member, may learn how to assist the patient with IV therapy at home. Patients may also learn to self-administer IV therapy.
Types of IV therapy at home
Your provider will talk to the patient about home IV therapy and the reason it is needed. Common home IV therapies include:
- Normal IV (one inserted into a vein just below your skin)
- Central venous catheter – (called a port)
- PICC line
Some of the common reasons for home IV therapy:
- Many antibiotics cannot be taken by mouth
- Some antibiotics are more effectively delivered by IV
- Treatment for hormone deficiency
- Patient-controlled analgesia pain relief
- Nutrition given through a vein
Is there a problem with my home IV therapy?
Home IV therapy is a safe and effective way to receive medication, nutrition and fluid at home. If you or the patient you are caring for are experiencing any of the following problems, contact your provider or home health nurse:
- Swelling in the vein or in the area around the needle
- Infection signs, including swelling, redness, pain or fever
- Needle coming out
- Bleeding from the area of the needle or tube