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  1. Larsen, Pamela DrPH, DNSc, FNP
  2. Eldridge, David MD
  3. Brinkley, Jason PhD
  4. Newton, Dale MD
  5. Goff, David MD
  6. Hartzog, Timothy MD
  7. Saad, Nancy Darden BSN, CCRC
  8. Perkin, Ron MD, MA


Placement of peripheral pediatric intravenous (IV) catheters in infants and children is difficult, even in skilled hands. This large, 2-institution prospective study used real-time independent observations to describe the effect of nurse experience and competence on the length of time and the number of attempts to establish a successful IV placement in the hospitalized child. Data from a convenience sample of 592 evaluable patients and 1135 venipunctures showed that successful IV placements required an average of 2 venipunctures over 28 minutes. Although nurse experience and self-rated competence were correlated with attaining a successful IV placement, time of day, predicted difficulty of the venipuncture, and cooperativeness of the child appeared to be better predictors of success.