IV (intravenous) nutrient therapy is a medical treatment by which sterile solutions of vitamins, minerals and other naturally occurring nutritive substances are infused directly into the blood stream. Some of the potential benefits of IV nutrient therapy are to supply nutrients to the cells without gastrointestinal interference, infusing higher doses than can be taken orally, to assist with repletion in deficient states, and cause disease modification or enhance a cellular process. Nutrient IV therapy can be delivered via peripheral intravenous line (PIV), a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC), a Port-A-Cath, or other central venous access devices (CVAD).
Total parenteral nutrition provides all of the carbohydrates, proteins, fats, water, electrolytes, vitamins, and minerals needed for the building of tissue, expenditure of energy, and other metabolic activities. TPN can be administered in the hospital or at home. TPN solutions are concentrated and can cause thrombosis of peripheral veins, so a central venous access device is usually required.