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Patty Janousek
secondary tubing
I have been asked a question by our CNS group regarding practice for secondary tubings. If a patient is on multiple antibiotics, does each AB need it's own tubing, or can one tubing be used and backprime? And if so, how do you handle compatability issues? The group was told by a certain Rep. that as long as you used tubing that does not have a drip chamber, and you backprime, compatability should not be an issue. We are trying to save money, but certainly not at any risk to the patient. If you are doing this practice, would you please respond as to how you are doing it, and who makes the tubing? Thanks, Patty
There are a couple of things

There are a couple of things to consider, but the information from the sales rep about no drip chamber is way off base. Hope someone will correctly inform him or her.

Backpriming is an acceptable practice but you do have to consider compatibility. The main issue is any drug that may be added to the primary fluid. For critical care areas with multiple drugs infusing, this could be an issue. It could also be an issue with other infusions like heparin or aminophylline, etc on the med-surg units. When you have multiple intermittent meds and/or a drug in the primary fluid, you can set up a bag of saline with a primary tubing and piggyback your intermittent secondary set into this saline line. The saline line is then connected to the primary line to the patient. The other issue is can the intermittent med and the med in the primary fluid infuse through the same line at all. If not, you will need a dual lumen catheter or 2 sites. Backpriming is acceptable if done correctly with these considerations. Lynn

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., RN, BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

126 Main Street, PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257


Office Phone 770-358-7861

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