Infusing Health And Wellness: The Benefits of IV Therapy in your Med Spa

February 13, 2023
Moxie Team

Are you looking to add high-impact treatment options to your med spa? With 75% of adult Americans chronically dehydrated, why not evaluate IV hydration therapy? This easy-to-administer treatment replenishes the body's water, electrolytes, and vitamins and could be a major earner (and upsell option) for your growing business. 

IV therapy has gained popularity over the last few years as a way to get a quick boost or to help recover from a hangover. Having fluids, vitamins, and minerals administered directly into their bloodstream offers clients a quick and efficient way to rehydrate and replenish essential nutrients.

People generally favor actions that fit into their schedules, don't require them to make drastic changes, and are easily accessible. IV therapy checks all of these boxes.

For med spas, IV therapy is highly complementary to other services. Being adequately hydrated has positive effects on the skin, providing moisture which can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles.

So, please sit back, grab a glass of water (or an IV bag), and let's dive into what IV therapy is, its benefits, and what med spa owners need to know before incorporating it into their offerings.

What is IV therapy?

Intravenous (IV) therapy is a semi-invasive procedure that delivers fluid that contains a cocktail of vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants, and electrolytes directly into the bloodstream. 

When performing the procedure, a healthcare practitioner will insert a cannula into one of the patient's veins—typically in the elbow, wrist, or back of the hand. They then connect the cannula to a tube, which leads to an IV bag containing a saline solution and — potentially — a nutrient cocktail that drips directly into their vein.

Variations of IV vitamin therapy are available for a range of health and wellness concerns. Some of these include:

  • Reduce dehydration
  • Provide an immunity boost
  • Reduce fatigue
  • Relieve depression, anxiety, and stress
  • Improve skin health
  • Treat hangovers and headaches
  • Treat migraines

How does IV therapy work?

Intravenous administration is the fastest way to deliver water and essential nutrients to the body because it bypasses the digestive system and goes straight to the bloodstream, which passes through the organs. The blood circulates through the body every 45 seconds, so the effects are almost immediate. 

Theoretically, substances or drugs delivered via IV are 100% bioavailable, which means that 100% of the dose will successfully reach its target site. However, there is currently little evidence to support this in practice. 

Despite this, many patients report experiencing relief and rejuvenation after an IV nutrition drip, but experts say this may just be a placebo effect.

Types of IV therapy

Med spas or IV lounges commonly refer to the intravenous therapies they offer as IV Hydration, IV Vitamin Therapy, or IV Hydration Therapy. All IV therapies will contain saline (sterile salt water) mixed with vitamins, minerals, nutrients, antioxidants, and electrolytes, all required by the body. 

The Myers' cocktail is an example of a well-known IV therapy formula. This famous formula contains high doses of vitamin C, and B vitamins, and minerals like calcium and magnesium, all mixed with sterile water.

NAD IV therapy is another intravenous treatment that infuses NAD coenzyme with a blend of vitamins in a saline solution into the bloodstream. Proponents claim that NAD IV therapy can help boost energy, enhance a person's overall well-being, and enhance brain function. 

Other potential benefits of using NAD IV therapy include the following:

  • Management of chronic conditions
  • Improve focus
  • Support addiction recovery

How effective is IV therapy?

Currently, there is little evidence directly linking IV therapy to improved skin health. 

However, hydration has been linked with improved skin health. Drinking 2.25 liters of water daily for four weeks enhanced skin thickness and density, while another study found that drinking 500 milliliters of water improved blood flow to the skin. Since IV therapy is a quick way to receive hydration, IV therapy may have immediate effects on the skin.

While limited studies prove the other wellness claims, some literature supports its medical and general health benefits.

Research shows that mega-doses of IV multivitamins are well-tolerated and have minimal side effects for treating conditions like asthma and fibromyalgia. It may also offer some benefits when used with conventional therapies, but further clinical trials are needed.

Who can administer IV therapy?

While many consider it a cosmetic treatment, most states consider IV therapy a medical practice since it involves injecting into the skin. Because of this, only trained and licensed medical professionals should perform the service.

Aside from physicians, many states allow non-physician providers, like a physician assistant (PA), nurse practitioner (NP), or registered nurse (RN), to administer IV fluids. Some states also allow licensed vocational nurses (LVNs) or licensed practical nurses (LPNs)  to administer IV fluids to patients as long as they have completed a board-approved educational program with IV therapy in the curriculum or successfully finished a course in IV therapy approved by the board.

However, they can only administer IV fluids and nutrition under the direct supervision of RNs, but they are not allowed to do so independently in home care settings.

Recently, Alabama's State Board of Medical Examiners enforced that only licensed physicians, PAs, NPs, and midwives can diagnose and prescribe IV hydration therapy. 

This means that nurses cannot prescribe IV therapy or use "standing orders" to justify treatment without a physician's consult. While regulations for IV therapy still vary in each state, more states may follow Alabama's lead.

Who can open an IV therapy business?

Since IV therapy, like other treatments offered in med spas, is medical, a physician must own the IV therapy business. However, positions on who can open an IV therapy business, or any clinic offering medical services, vary from state to state.

Read here to learn more about finding the best medical director for your med spa.

How profitable is IV therapy as a treatment option?

IV therapy can be a highly profitable service in your med spa as either a stand-alone or add-on service. 

TIP:  You can offer IV nutrition drips to clients who wait for the numbing creams to work before beginning a microneedling or during body sculpting sessions.

On average, an IV therapy session costs $280. If you schedule two sessions a day, six days a week, you can earn $160,000 in annual revenue. Assuming a 35% average industry margin, this equals $56,000 in profit per year. However, you can expect even higher earnings since most IV hydration lounges can book concurrent appointments and work with 8 to 10 clients daily.

Summary

Offering  IV therapy in your med spa can be an excellent way to generate additional revenue, improve patient care, and diversify your offerings.

Its growing popularity makes it a great addition to your menu. 

But like other treatments, there are many considerations when offering IV therapy, such as state laws and the need for a medical director. The Moxie team can help you navigate the process and ensure that you provide the best experience to your patients. Contact us todayLearn More About Moxie and How We Can Help You Open Your Own Med Spa >

*This article is intended to provide a general guide on what professional licenses and conditions are needed to operate a practice or perform certain treatments. This information alone does not authorize, certify, or confer the ability of anyone to perform these treatments, practice outside their scope, or violate the corporate practice of medicine.

While based on currently available information, the rules and policies on scope of practice issues and ownership can, and do, change frequently. Specific training, education, supervision, protocol and regulatory requirements will differ depending on each person's situation in their state. Therefore, each person must examine their own professional situation, skill level, regulating board guidance, and scope of practice before proceeding.

You should not act upon this information without seeking knowledgeable legal counsel that takes into account the laws of your specific jurisdiction. All uses of the content of this site, other than personal uses, are prohibited.

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