Administering blood or other fluids intravenously (IV) is common to hospital care. And the temperature of an IV fluid can have a major impact on the patient’s health. To prevent the unwanted effects of cold IV infusions, hospitals use warming devices that raise an IV liquid to a temperature within the body’s ideal temperature range: 95-100 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature of IV fluid is below 95 degrees Fahrenheit upon administration, it could produce one or more of the following effects:
Skin care physicians – Hypothermia in hospital settings is often the result of cold IV fluids combined with the cooling effect that anesthesia has on the body. Cold IV fluid alone can produce hypothermia, and when the cooling effect of anesthesia is added in, the hypothermia can become severe.
Skin care physicians warm helps prevent hypothermia that results from anesthesia.
The lower the body’s temperature, the less able it is to defend against opportunistic infections. In hospital settings, where opportunistic infections can be especially virulent, hypothermia during surgery can be a major contributor to opportunistic infection. By helping prevent anesthesia induced hypothermia, warm IV fluids can also help prevent opportunistic infection.
Perhaps the least known effect of cold IV fluids is cardiac arrest. Research shows that administering cold IV fluids to injury victims can cause them to enter a state of cardiac shock, whereas warm IV fluids can help prevent cardiac arrest. Having an injury victim enter cardiac arrest dramatically complicates the treatment approach, and could result in a preventable death.
Skin care physicians – Hospitals have used IV warmers for years, but they have not used warmers that have a fast setup time, a fast heat-up time, and are easily portable. A standard warmer takes 2-3 minutes to set up, 6-8 minutes to warm up, weighs 6-8 pounds, and requires an electrical outlet. It also requires sterilization between periods of use, which brings a possible risk of infection due to improper sterilization.