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When a 3-way Stop Cock Comes in Hand

Some medical practitioners find a 3-way stop cock in a patient’s intravenous line a bit of a hassle.  Having to manipulate it before finding the right connection requires gentle yet precise handling, especially if the patient’s veins are hard to hit. You wouldn’t want to get the cannula out of place and start another line then.

Although, this may be the sentiment of some personnel to the little paraphernalia, the bedside nurse can attest to the usefulness of the 3-way stop cock.

The 3-Way Stop Cock

A 3-way stop cock is a little device attached to an IV cathether introcan or to an arterial system. It provides a 3-way flow, which can be from inlet to outlet, from inlet to side-port, or from side-port to outlet, depending on which way the stop cock’s handle is turned. It is very useful for a lot of reasons.

  • It can lessen a patient’s invasive lines which is quite helpful for those elderly with small and brittle veins. Pediatric patients with sensitive veins can also benefit greatly from the 3-way stop cock. It can be attached to their IV catheter neoflon and avoid having another line established.
  • It can promote needleless drug infusion.
  • It can be used to attach an extension line without having to prick another vein.
  • It can also be used to draw blood samples for laboratory purposes.

How it Works

A 3-way stop cock works simply. You only have to take note which ports are the open and closed ones. After getting this tricky part, you will easily know which ports to turn for different purposes.

Take note, the IV line’s main purpose is to deliver fluids to the patient. So, after manipulating the stop cock, make sure to turn the handle and get the fluid delivered promptly. Unless otherwise directed, of course.

And since one purpose of the 3-way stop cock is to reduce the IV lines, handle the site carefully and gently. Secure the IV site with tegaderm and properly placed transpore plasters. This will make handling the stop cock for a different procedure easier.

Taking care of the sick is quite challenging and stressful. How much more if the patient is one of your own? Let us rest assured, though, that our sick will be taken cared of properly in medical establishments with the best quality equipment and supplies. And if you must, get the best medical supplies for your loved ones at Philippine Medical Supplies. They’re just a click away. Visit them now.