If you have ever been in a hospital room where a patient is being filled with fluids, you have no doubt seen the bags of clear liquid being injected from tubes into the patient. This is an important addition to the fluids of the medicinal injections. It is called bacteriostatic water, which is not to be confused with sterile water. This water is made to help resist the growth of bacteria by completely inhibiting it. Made from filtered water that has been sterilized to remove the bacteria, bacteriostatic water is also mixed with a little benzyl alcohol to prevent any bacteria growth. This is where the water gets the “static” part of its name. It has been used for many years to dilute medications during an injection, and it is important for several reasons. Here is what you need to know.
Bacteriostatic water can be injected into the patient in three different ways. The first way is intravenous, which simply means that the injection is done by using a needle to access a vein in the patient’s body. Typically, you will see this done on the forearms, elbow crook, or tops of the hands. The second way that the injection is done is intramuscular. In this injection, the needle accesses a muscle to complete the injection. The final way is known as subcutaneous, which simply means the injection is completed by using a needle under the skin. Each method is done solely based on the various medications or the best path for the injection to be as effective as possible. Medical professionals will know when and how to use it the best.
The bacteriostatic water does not contain any agents that kill off the bacteria outright. Therefore, it is not an anti-bacterial agent. In fact, benzyl alcohol, which is part of bacteriostatic water, is used to help prohibit the growth of bacteria in the water, but it doesn’t kill the bacteria outright. The reason why it doesn’t contain any anti-bacterial agents is that often these agents can create adverse reactions to various medications. At first use, bacteriostatic water, along with a close relative known as sterile water, do not have any bacteria in the water. However, after the first use of either of these waters, the container that holds them can become contaminated. This is why most professional discard the bottle after 28 days to prevent giving a patient bacteriostatic water that has lost its ability to inhibit the growth of bacteria.
A Few Benefits
Bacteriostatic water has several benefits that can make it worthwhile to use in certain cases. One benefit is the ability to dilute medications. It can also be used multiple times during one treatment period. Instead of killing off the bacteria, using bacteriostatic water multiple times can help prevent any future growth of the bacteria, and there is less of a risk of different bacterium growing. One other benefit is the price. Bacteriostatic water, despite the name, is relatively easy to manufacture and cheap as well. In fact, if you wanted to, you could manufacture this water at home as long as you know the procedure. However, purchasing the water from a certified producer or manufacturer is also relatively cheap. It is also available everywhere, especially in medical facilities.
Bacteriostatic water might not be a common name to those who are not in the medical field, but it does have an incredible purpose. It is used to help inhibit the growth of bacteria in the patients it is given. Bacteriostatic water is also used for several other purposes like diluting or even dissolving various medications. It is a readily available product that most medical facilities have on site. Many doctors use it as well as a part of their injections for certain patients. Though it doesn’t have an anti-bacterial agent, bacteriostatic water does prevent further growth of bacteria in the water. It also doesn’t create unwanted reactions to medications, which is common with anti-bacterial agents. Bacteriostatic water has proved its importance in the medical world time and time again. It only stands to reason that this specific type of water would be an important part of medical treatment for many years to come.