Aim: This study was conducted to determine whether the ventrogluteal site could be used for intramuscular injections in children under the age of 3 and to compare the subcutaneous and muscle layer thickness at the anterolateral, deltoid and ventrogluteal site in the different age groups and in both sexes.
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Background: Although recent literature has reported that the ventrogluteal area can be an alternative site for intramuscular injections in children ≤12 months of age, little research-based evidence has been found for the use of the ventrogluteal site in infants and toddlers.
Design: A descriptive study which took place between November 2013–August 2014.
Method: A total of 142 children between the ages of 1-36 months were selected by random sampling and ultrasound measurements were made of subcutaneous and muscle thicknesses in the anterolateral, deltoid and ventrogluteal areas. Measurements were analysed using one-way anova and independent samples t-test.
Results: The subcutaneous tissue thicknesses in the deltoid, anterolateral and ventrogluteal areas in children between 1-12 months old (n = 56) were 5·20, 6·62 and 7·26 mm respectively, while in children between 13-24 months old (n = 42), these measurements were 4·35, 6·72 and 7·98 mm; in children between 25-36 months old (n = 44), the measurements were 5·92, 7·97 and 13·5 mm. The muscle thicknesses in the deltoid, anterolateral and ventrogluteal areas in children 1- 12 months old were 5·86, 9·10 and 8·17 respectively, while in children between 13-24 months old, the measurements were 7·71, 12·92 and 17·32 mm; in children 25-36 months old, the measurements were 9·28, 18·81 and 19·62 mm.
Conclusion: This study found that the muscle in the ventrogluteal site is adequately developed, even in infants between the ages of 1-12 months and that in particular, in children 12-36 months old, the ventrogluteal site is even thicker than the anterolateral.
Güneş, Ü.Y., Ceylan, B. and Bayındır, P. (2015) Is the ventrogluteal site suitable for intramuscular injections in children under the age of three? Journal of Advanced Nursing. September 29th. [epub ahead of print].
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