A peripheral IV, often just called an IV, is a short, thin, plastic tube called a catheter that goes through the skin and into a vein. IVs are used to deliver fluids and medications to premature babies who cannot take food or medications by mouth, or who require medications that can only be given directly into the bloodstream.
IVs are inserted using a needle that is removed from the skin once the catheter is in the vein correctly. In premature infants, IV lines are commonly placed in the hands, arms, feet, or scalp. Because premature infants have fragile veins, IVs usually need to be replaced every 1 to 3 days.
Also Known As: IV
I hated seeing the IV in my baby's scalp, but I knew it was delivering important medications.