## What is drip rate calculation?

Drip rate calculation is the amount of IV fluid or medications given to the patients. This drip rate calculation is done using the drops per minute formula. Medical professionals use it in healthcare settings. Electric pumps are sometimes unavailable, so a drop-per-minute formula is used. This means to calculate the number of drops every minute.

## Drop Factor

To understand how to calculate drops per minute, use the drop factor formula.

**Drop factor:** The fluid from IV tubing is given to the patient at a specific flow rate. This flow rate is known as the drop factor gtt/min. The drop factor is the number of drops (gtts) in one milliliter(ml) of solution. It is the rate of the number of drops every minute into the drip chamber.

## Types of IV tubing

There are two types of IV tubing to calculate the drip rate formula.

### Macro drip tubing

Macro drip as the name indicates, is wider and used to infuse large volumes of fluids in less amount of time. This helps in a rapid infusion of the liquids in the patient’s body. It is available in 10,12, 15, or 20 gtts/ml (drops per milliliter).

### Micro drip tubing

Micro drip is narrower and infuses small and precise amounts of medication. This is usually used for children and infants. The drop factor of micro drip tubing is 60 gtts/ml.

## Drops per minute Formula

By tightening or loosening the roller clamp, you can adjust the flow of drops per ml.

**Drops per minute (DPM) = Infusion Rate (ml/hr) x Drop factor / 60**

The formula is to multiply the Infusion rate with the Drop factor and divide it by 60.

**DPM:**This refers to the number of drops every minute.**Infusion rate:**The amount of drug administered to the patient.**Drop factor:**Found on the IV tubing, which is the number of drops per ml.

### Example of drip rate formula with macro tubing drip.

Infusion rate: 100 ml/ hr

Drop factor: 10 Drops/ml.

### How to Calculate drops per minute:

DPM = 100 (ml/hr) x 10(drops/ml) / 60

DPM = 1000(ml/hr) / 60

**Drops per minute are 16.6 gtts/min.**

### Example 2

Another example of a drop factor formula for microtubing is,

Infusion rate: 100ml/hr

Drop factor: 20 drops/ml.

### How to Calculate drops per minute:

DPM = 100 (ml/hr) x 20 (drops/ml) / 60

DPM = 2000 (drops/ml) / 60

**Drops per minute is 33.3 gtts/min.**

### Example of drip factor formula for microtubing drip

Here we have an example of calculating drops per minute for microtubing drips.

Infusion rate: 30 ml/hr

Drop factor: 60 drops/ml.

DPM = 30(ml/hr) x 60(drops/ml) /60

DPM = 1800(ml/hr) /60

**Drop per minute =30 gtts/min**

## Important things to remember while taking DPM or drops per minute calculations:

- Always count the drops for a full minute to be accurate
- Confirm the drop rate on IV tubing.
- Continuous monitor the IV flow.
- If you think there is a need for a change in IV intake, you can change the drip rate with supervision.
- Make sure that units are the same throughout the calculation of the drops per minute formula.
- Always double-check the calculation you did to be sure.
- Ask other healthcare workers to double-check your work.

## What is a gravity flow rate drip chart?

It is a tool that helps to find the appropriate flow rate for a gravity feeding set.

## What is gtt/ml?

It is the number of drops in one milliliter of fluid. To calculate the drip rate, you have to count the number of drops falling in the drip chamber in a minute.

## How to calculate gtt/ ml?

It is calculated by total volume in ml divided by time, which is 60 minutes, multiplied by the drop factor in gtt/ml. This equals the IV drip rate in gtt/ min.

## Conclusion:

Healthcare nurses and professionals use the drops per minute formula to calculate the gtt/min. IV infusions are given to the patient through infusion pumps, but sometimes these electronic pumps are not available. Therefore, nurses use a drop factor formula to give medicine to the patients.

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