How to Make an IV Solution

By Sean Lancaster

Intravenous (IV) drips are an important part of modern medical practice. They are used to treat patients suffering from dehydration, administer high doses of antibiotics and replace blood volume for patients who have lost a significant amount. Manufacturers of prepackaged IV bags have the sterile environment required to prevent the introduction of bacterial contaminants. Packaging and solutions not prepared in a sterile environment have the potential of introducing infection into a patient.

You can make your own IV bag at home, but you need to do so in a sterile environment.

Step 1

Prepare a clean room with all the required equipment and reagents. It is important that the environment remains clean once you start work so that you don't introduce any potential contaminants during the preparation.

Step 2

Prepare a 500 milliliter brown bottle for mixing the IV solution. If you have any doubts as to the sterility of the bottle, sterilize the bottle again by boiling in distilled water for at least 15 minutes or placing the water in the autoclave.

Step 3

Fill the bottle approximately halfway with sterile water. Many IV drips use combinations of salt crystals, dextrose or lactated Ringer's solution. Add the medications and mix to dissolve. Add enough sterile water to fill the bottle.

Step 4

Cap the bottle and allow it to cool before placing it in the refrigerator for storage. Maintain the bottles in the clean room environment.