(3) Upper arm (deltoid muscle). The injection site in this area is a
rectangular area bounded on the top by the lower edge of the shoulder bone (the
acramion process), on the bottom by the armpit (the axilla), and by the lateral one-third
of the arm (see figure 2-4).
Figure 2-4. Location for upper arm injection.
(a) The safe area for injection is generally defined as about three
fingers below the shoulder joint.
(b) The needle length of one inch is normally used because of the size
of the deltoid muscle.
(c) The volume of medication given in this site can be up to a
maximum of one milliliter per injection for an adult. A volume of 0.5 milliliter or less is
more commonly used.
(d) The shoulder should be completely exposed so you can determine
the exact location of the injection. The clothing should not be rolled up to attempt to
administer an injection.
(e) Ensure that the patient is in a standing or sitting position, with the
arm at side and muscles relaxed. Direct the patient to hang the arm loose.
j. Prepare Injection Site. Clean the skin at the injection site thoroughly with an
antiseptic pad (sponge with alcohol or Betadine). Use a circular motion from the center
of the injection site outward. Place the antiseptic pad between the last two fingers for
use later when you complete the injection.