Drawing up and administering intramuscular injections: a review of the literature

J Adv Nurs. 2000 Mar;31(3):574-82. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2648.2000.01312.x.


Drawing up and administering intramuscular injections: a review of the literature Intramuscular (IM) injections have been an integral part of drug administration in nursing practice for almost half a century. However, there are some conflicting practices which warrant investigation to determine their effectiveness in this aspect of patient care. To this end, this paper presents the results of a literature review which was carried out in order to establish current understanding of present day knowledge, procedures and guidelines for the administration of IM injections. Areas addressed within this review include injection sites used, injuries associated with IM injections, issues surrounding needle selection and volume administered through IM injections, injection techniques and nursing skills associated with IM injections. Synthesis of the research reviewed allows the development of research-based guidelines for this skill. These guidelines offer a framework for nurses who wish to provide practice in line with current research into the process of drawing up and administration of intramuscular injections.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Clinical Nursing Research
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Humans
  • Infection Control / methods
  • Injections, Intramuscular / adverse effects
  • Injections, Intramuscular / instrumentation
  • Injections, Intramuscular / methods*
  • Injections, Intramuscular / nursing*
  • Massage / methods
  • Massage / nursing
  • Needles / supply & distribution
  • Needs Assessment
  • Patient Selection
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Suction / methods
  • Suction / nursing