IM Injection – What Is It? – Intramuscular Injection Video

Knowing what is an intramuscular injection is important if you are using this procedure in your nursing career. It is a shot of medicine that needs to be given into a muscle. The reason we give intramuscular injection is because some of the drugs are only for that purpose, otherwise they will not work. Those types of drugs are: oil solutions, half-oil solutions and vitamins.

Everything you need to know about the syringe:

The syringe is composed from three parts: needle, barrel, and a plunger. With the needle you are making the shot into the muscle, while the barrel holds the medicine. You will notice that the barrel has markings on it just like a ruler. Those markings are actually milliliters.  That is how you know how much milliliters has your medicine. The last part of the syringe is the plunger- it is used to get the medicine into and out of the syringe.

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Intramuscular Injection (IM) Video



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IM injection procedureWhere you can give an intramuscular injection?

Vastus Lateralis Muscle (thight): This is the most often place that everybody uses it for intramuscular injection. It is easy to see and that is why you can give yourself an injection. It is a good spot for children that are under 3 years old. In order to give an intramuscular injection first you have to look at your thigh and divide it into 3 equal parts. The middle third part is the exact place where the injection goes.

Ventrogluteal Muscle (Hip): the person has to lie on his or hers side to get the injection. You have to place the heel on your hand exactly on the upper, outer part of the thigh, the place where meets the buttocks. Place your thumb at the groin and your fingers toward the person’s head. Your first finger has to be separated from the other three fingers. That is how you can form a V; you will feel the edge of a bone along the tips of your little and ring fingers. The injection goes right in the middle of the V. The hip is a place for an injection for adults and children older than 7 months.

Deltoid Muscle (Upper arm muscle): the upper arm has to be exposed in order for you to give the injection in the center of an upside down triangle. The bone that goes across the top of the upper arm is called the acromion process. Feel that bone. At the bottom of that bone is the base of the triangle. The point of the triangle is below the middle of the base at the level of the armpit. You can give the injection in the center of the triangle, about 1 to 2 inches below the acromion process. You cannot give this injection if the person is very this or the muscle is very small.

Dorsogluteal Muscle (buttocks): you have to expose the one side of the buttocks and wipe draw a line with alcohol. Start from the top of the crack between the buttocks to the side of the body. Find the middle of that line and go up about 3 inches. From this point you have to draw another line and across the first line and end it about halfway down the buttock. You can feel a curved bone in the upper outer square. The injection shot goes in the upper outer square below the curved bone. The muscles of the infants or children that are younger than 3 years old are not developed enough. Do not use this site to give them intramuscular injection.

What do I need to give an injection?

  • Alcohol wipe
  • Sterile 2×2 gauze pad
  • Needle and syringe in correct sizes
  • Sterile gloves

What Is An Intramuscular Injection in five steps

  1. Prepare the area: wipe the area and let the area dry.
  2. Prepare the needle: You have to hold the syringe with your writing hand and pull the cover off with the other hand. Hold the syringe between your thumb and your first finger.
  3. Press and pull: hold the skin around where you will give the injection. Use your free hand and press on and pull the skin so that it is slightly tight.
  4. Insert the needle: insert the needle into the muscle. You have to hold the syringe barrel tightly and use your wrist to inject the needle through the skin and into the muscle. You have to be careful; needle insertion has to be at a 90 degree angle. Push down on the plunger to inject the medicine. Do not use force the medicine, some medicines hurt. You have to inject the medicine slowly to reduce the pain.
  5. Remove the needle: Once the medicine is injected, remove the needle. Place gauze over the medicine where you gave the injection.

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