IV Infiltration - Extravasation

In many cases, IV injuries result in temporary symptoms that cause little or no pain. However, in some cases, injury can be severe and permanent. In the event of IV infiltration or extravasation (fluid of an improper pH too acidic for surrounding tissue outside the vein), patients may experience severe pain and debilitating injury. Such injuries are easily preventable through standard medical procedures, and if injury does occur, it very likely is an indication that a medical professional has failed to provide care of a reasonable standard. If a nurse, doctor, or other healthcare professional causes injury because he or she was negligent, you can seek compensation for your resulting injuries through a medical malpractice claim.


An intravenous injection is intended to be administered directly into the vein. If medication or IV fluid makes its way to surrounding tissues due to an improperly placed IV, damage to the vein during the insertion of the IV, improper IV maintenance, or the improper changing of an IV, the resulting condition is known as IV infiltration.


Some of the symptoms associated with this condition often include swelling, edema (a collection of watery fluid within the tissue), infection, skin pallor (an unhealthy pale appearance), a cool feeling in the affected area, burn damage, and compartment syndrome. In cases where injury is minor, symptoms can typically be alleviated by withdrawing the IV and draining excess fluid from the arm. However, in severe cases the injury can be permanent. If medication or IV fluid is not in the appropriate pH range and is too acidic, IV infiltration can lead to tissue burns as a result of the chemical reaction. These burns can cause severe pain and result in nerve damage, which can lead to limited use of the affected limb. A chemical burn can be just as damaging as a heat burn, and these injuries often have a permanent impact on the victim's quality of life.

A serious condition which can arise from IV infiltration or extravasation is compartment syndrome, which is caused by an increase in pressure in the muscle compartment. The condition can cause nerve damage, muscle damage, and complications relating to blood circulation. Among the symptoms of compartment syndrome are decreases in sensitivity, paleness of the skin, muscle weakness, and severe or constant pain that remains constant or gets worse over time. If a patient suffers from compartment syndrome, surgery is required.


At Locks Law Firm, you can expect quality representation and informative counsel. If you or someone you love has suffered permanent injury as a result of IV infiltration or extravasation, you have legal rights. Locks Law Firm can bring our experience and resources to bear on your case, helping to ensure that you are justly compensated for your losses. Though every case is unique, the plaintiff in IV infiltration cases may be able to recover damages relating to medical expenses, loss of wages, loss of future income, lifetime care expenses, and pain and suffering.

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