How Are Syringe Sizes Measured?

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Syringes are usually measured in milliliters, states the University of North Carolina. They may also be measured in cubic centimeters, advises BD. One cubic centimeter is the equivalent of one milliliter.

Syringes range in size from one to 60 milliliters, states the University of North Carolina. Individuals should select a syringe one size greater than the amount being measured.

Syringes are marked so individuals can make precise measurements. A 1 millimeter syringe, for example, has labels each 0.1 milliliter graduation, advises RMIT University.

Many individuals use syringes to administer insulin, which is prescribed in units. One unit is equivalent to 0.1 milliliters, advises BD. So an individual prescribed 100 units of insulin, should inject 1 milliliter of the drug.

The needles used with a syringe also vary in length and diameter, states the University of North Carolina. Most needles range in length from 3/8 inch to 3 1/2 inches.

The gauge of a needle is the measurement of the lumen, or the hollow part of the needle. Gauges range from 27 to 13, advises the University of North Carolina. A 13 gauge needle is the largest, while a 27 gauge is the finest. Larger gauge needles must be used with thicker, or more viscous, medications.