IV Flow Rate Calculator

Uses the drop factor, volume and time to determine the right drip rate at the IV rate that is prescribed.

You can find more information about the calculation method in the text below the form.

The IV flow rate calculator determines the appropriate right drip rate based on drop factor, volume and time.

This can help medical professionals with dosing correctly at the prescribed intravenous rate.

IV flow rate (gtts/min) = Volume (mL) x Flow factor (gtts/mL) / Time (min)

Volume ordered:*
Flow/drop factor:*
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Steps on how to print your input & results:

1. Fill in the calculator/tool with your values and/or your answer choices and press Calculate.

2. Then you can click on the Print button to open a PDF in a separate window with the inputs and results. You can further save the PDF or print it.

Please note that once you have closed the PDF you need to click on the Calculate button before you try opening it again, otherwise the input and/or results may not appear in the pdf.


Variables and formula

When the volume that needs to be administered and the time frame (in either minutes or hours) are known, the intravenous flow rate can be calculated. This also has to account for a flow factor in gtts/mL to ensure the therapy administration goes at the prescribed rate.

All types of intravenous infusion require the IV rate to be established beforehand, whether they are under manual and gravity control or are of the infusion pump type.

The IV rate or the appropriate drip rate is also known as the calibration of the micro or macrodrip used.

The most commonly used tubings are macrodrip and have a drop factor of 15 gtts/mL. Other macrodrip tubings have factors of 10, 20 or even 60 gtts/mL.

The IV flow rate calculator uses the following formula:

IV flow rate = Volume x Flow factor / Time


■ IV flow rate is measured in gtts/min;

■ Volume is in mL;

■ Flow factor is measured in gtts/mL;

■ Time is accounted for in minutes.



1. Duell, D. J., Martin, B. C., & Smith, S. F. Clinical nursing skills: Basic to advanced skills (6th edition). 2004. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

2. Bentz, P. M. & Ellis, J. R. Modules for basic nursing skills (7th edition). 2007. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

3. Pugsley HE, Farquharson RF. Factors Influencing the Rate of Flow of Intravenous Infusions. Can Med Assoc J. 1944; 51(1): 5–11.

Specialty: Pharmacology

Objective: Determination

Type: Calculator

No. Of Variables: 3

Article By: Denise Nedea

Published On: June 10, 2017

Last Checked: June 10, 2017

Next Review: June 10, 2023