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Guy, the Injector Guy™

With over 35 years of experience, Guy Luongo, our president and co-founder, shares his vast knowledge of the use of power injector systems and syringes

Spikes vs. Straws

If you prefer reading to watching, here's the transcript of this video from our resident expert and president, Guy Luongo, talking about the difference between spikes and straws for contrast injector syringes.


Hi, I’m Guy from Steriatrics. I’m here to show you how to spike a contrast bottle versus using straws and why we’re doing away with the straws. So, the first thing that I want to show you is a packet that comes with the kit and it has our tubing, our syringe and then behind the syringe, you can see the straw. Now, a lot of times people grab into these and they don’t realize how very delicate it is when they pull it out and keep that straw sterile.


Remember, this end is the end that’s going to be put into that bottle of contrast. So when you see this, you’re going to notice that sometimes when people go to put this on, they’re actually  hitting this or they’re leaving it on, they’re pulling up a bottle of contrast and they’re hitting this. As a matter of fact, most regulatory companies out there are warning us to stop using straws; they want us to go with fill spikes. And, the injector heads are actually designed to use fill spikes vs. straws and I’ll show you why.


So, the first thing that we’re going to do is to take our bottle of contrast and we need to expose the rubber stopper portion. In the past, we just unscrewed or pulled the stuff out and moved the rubber stopper to put our straw in. Now, they make it even easier as you can see here; pull this pin back…pull it, and now it exposed the rubber stopper. What’s nice, at this point, you don’t need to use alcohol, you don’t need to use anything- it’s clean. So what we’re going to do, is in our kits, you’re going to notice that you get a spike; you’re going to get a small spike and a large spike. There’s a dust cap actually on the spike portion that goes into the contrast on this end so you don’t have to worry about contaminating that because our fingers can’t get inside the hole to contaminate it.


Now, what we’re going to do is to pull the leur lock down to the bottom, slide this (spike) on, and then this is where it gets a little tricky. You’re going to remove the dust cap, and we’re going to look for that little bulls eye. What you’re going to do is to go up here, find the bulls eye on an angle, hopefully you can see it here, you’re going to take it and push it down. You’ll notice that there are even pots for the wings to hold on to. Now, you’re going to go over here, hit your autofill, and when you’re autofilling, you want to hold this bottle because right now it’s pulling down and it’s going expel back up just like it would with a hand syringe to make sure there’s no air, and then it’s going to fill. And when it fills, it’s going to automatically stop for the protocol that you chose, and it’s automatically drawing that contrast up through that spike. The spikes are vented and you can see all that air dissipates. Now, all you have to do is to pull this (contrast bottle and spike) off, throw the spike and everything away, hook up with your tubing and you’re all set. Nice and easy. Hope that helps!

Watch more tips from Guy here

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