Quantitative assessment of required separator fluid volume in multi-infusion settings

Doesburg, F., Middendorp, D., Dieperink, W., Bult, W., Nijsten, M. W. & Touw, D. J., 4-May-2020, In : Journal of vascular access. p. 1129729820917262 8 p., 1129729820917262.

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Administering a separator fluid between incompatible solutions can optimize the use of intravenous lumens. Factors affecting the required separator fluid volume to safely separate incompatible solutions are unknown.


An intravenous tube (2-m, 2-mL, 6-French) containing methylene blue dye was flushed with separator fluid until a methylene blue concentration


Neither administration rate nor solvent affected the separator fluid volume (p = 0.24 and p = 0.12, respectively). Glucose 5% as separator fluid required a marginally smaller mean +/- SD separator fluid volume than NaCl 0.9% (3.64 +/- 0.13 mL vs 3.82 +/- 0.11 mL, p <0.001). Using 2-mL tubing required less separator fluid volume than 4-mL tubing for methylene blue (3.89 +/- 0.57 mL vs 4.91 +/- 0.88 mL, p = 0.01) and eosin yellow (4.41 +/- 0.56 mL vs 5.63 +/- 0.15 mL, p <0.001). Extended tubing required less separator fluid volume/mL of tubing than smaller tubing for both methylene blue (2 vs 4 mL, 1.54 +/- 0.22 vs 1.10 +/- 0.19, p <0.001) and eosin yellow (2 vs 4 mL, 1.75 +/- 0.22 vs 1.25 +/- 0.03, p <0.001).


The separator fluid volume was neither affected by the administration rate nor by solvent. Glucose 5% required a marginally smaller separator fluid volume than NaCl 0.9%, however its clinical impact is debatable. A larger intravenous tubing volume requires a larger separator fluid volume. However, the ratio of separator fluid volume to the tubing's volume decreases as the tubing volume increases.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1129729820917262
Pages (from-to)1129729820917262
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of vascular access
Early online date2020
Publication statusPublished - 4-May-2020


  • Infusions, intravenous, infusion pumps, disposable equipment, vascular access devices, spectrophotometry, ultraviolet, DEVICES

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