Drug injection sites vary with the administration route. The instructions below describe proper identification of injection
sites for I.M., S.C., and I.V. drugs.
To begin, wash your hands, put on gloves, and locate the appropriate site.
Clean the site with an alcohol pad, and administer the injection as described here.
You can administer an I.M. injection into the muscles shown below. In these
illustrations, specific injection sites are shaded.
- Locate the lower edge of the acromial process.
- Insert the needle 1" to 2" below the acromial process at a 90-degree angle.
- Draw an imaginary line from the posterior superior iliac spine to the greater trochanter.
- Insert the needle at a 90-degree angle above and outside the drawn line.
- You can administer a Z-track injection through this site. After drawing up the drug, change the needle, displace the skin lateral to the injection site, withdraw the needle, and then release the skin.
- With the palm of your hand, locate the greater trochanter of the femur.
- SSpread your index and middle fingers posteriorly from the anterior superior iliac spine to the furthest area possible. This is the correct injection site.
- Remove your fingers and insert the needle at a 90-degree angle.
lateralis and rectus femoris sites
- Find the lateral quadriceps muscle for the vastus lateralis, or the anterior thigh for the rectus femoris.
- Insert the needle at a 90-degree angle into the middle third of the muscle, parallel to the skin surface.
S.C. drugs can be injected into the fat pads on the abdomen, buttocks, upper back, and lateral upper arms and thighs (shaded in the illustrations below). If your patient requires frequent S.C. injections, make sure to rotate injection sites.
- Gently gather and elevate or spread S.C. tissue.
- IInsert the needle at a 45- or 90-degree angle, depending on the drug or the amount of S.C. tissue at the site.
I.V. drugs can be injected into the
veins of the arms and hands. The illustration at right shows commonly used sites.
- Locate the vein using a tourniquet.
- Insert the catheter at a slight angle (about 10 degrees).
- Release the tourniquet when blood appears in the syringe or tubing.
- Slowly inject the drug into the vein.