January 11, 2000
Question from a nurse in Michigan, USA:
Can insulin be given IV push [intravenously, pushed into the vein by syringe]? I am a new nurse and this was a sliding scale order for one of my patients. The patient's blood sugar level was 234 and the sliding scale order was to give 2 units of R insulin IV push and 8 units R subcutaneously. The patient was 54 years old. My nursing drug book stated not to give concentrated insulin IV. Is this something new that physicians are beginning to prescribe?
Regular insulin can be given as an IV push undiluted. The only reason to dilute it is to facilitate low dose continuous infusion if this is what is needed.