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Nurse unable to draw blood - tips for tiny veins?

Discussion in 'Type 2 Diabetes' started by Fallgal, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. grum

    grum Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Just seen this entry about blood taking on recent email from diabetes uk. Seems there are quite alot of us that don't wish to part with our blood too easily! All suggestions made are correct from the drinking water, to keeping warm, I even wore a thick hoodie to make sure arms were kept warm, (this is summer) however, after waiting and getting very hot, it took three tries to get the blood out, needed the 'special' needle, fairy needle tiny and works every time. As a blood donor had same problem, bloodless in one arm! Never worked this one out, wonder if anyone knows why this happens. Anyway, my glucose result was ok likewise all other areas carried out from the one test.
     
  2. beautifulminxx

    beautifulminxx Family member · Newbie

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    I have had this problem forever. Once when I was inpatient in the hospital, they had put an iv in the main vein in the crook of my arm, which if anyone knows, is the worst place for an iv! Especially if you're going to have to have it for any length of time. You're alarm will go off constantly, and you'll never get any rest at all. So i asked that they move it, and after sticking me in almost every vein i have, they finally called for a more experienced nurse who was able to move the iv. I asked them to let me do it myself, but they were very against that, although i know that I could have gotten it very quickly. Another time, going into surgery, i went in with my iv half way in, half out, because they weren't able to get it in correctly. And blood draws, I've learned to tell the phlebotemist exactly how to get my blood. This really hels if you are aware of the best way to get the needle in. I've had so many surgeries, and blood draws, that I'm pretty much an expert now.
     
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  3. Tophat1900

    Tophat1900 Type 3c · Well-Known Member

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    Cold weather and dehydration will hide them. Blood drawing Inexperience will also make it hard. I have good spots for taking it and always suggest they use them and I point them out. Usually no problems, inexperienced drawers will sometimes ignore what you say and that often ends in failure. Then they use what you pointed out and wow, they got it no problem.
     
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  4. Angelofthemarches

    Angelofthemarches Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I am also a nurse - was not great at drawing blood so really had to practice and study it!! Ask the nurse/phlebotomist to always use a butterfly needle (the tiny kind). This will maximise chances. Also re keeping warm etc, ask if you can sit with your hands/lower arms in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes - if necessary bring a big plastic bowl yourself! Tell them at the start you think you might have veins which are difficult to access - they might produce their 'best' phlebotomist.
     
  5. Goonergal

    Goonergal Type 2 · Moderator
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    I have the same problem. Usually they get it out of my hand after a few goes at the arm. Once in hospital they tried my foot. Cannulas are even worse, and last time I was in hospital they had to get an anaesthetist to do it.
     
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  6. Oldman1952

    Oldman1952 Type 2 · Member

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    Hi there everyone, if you don't give up your blood easily there have been quite a few posts giving great advice. Is there any walkers, fishermen/ladies or golfers? On a particularly cold windy day you can have very cold numb hands and fingers. Can I suggest hand warmers around the site of the venipuncture. It opens up the veins like the warm water soak or warm compresses, flannels with nice quite warmer than usual. There is one other method of helping the veins to dilate and that is GTN gel (Glyceryl Tri Nitrate). We used to use it when we were collecting blood donations with the larger 19g needles. Best regards Oldman1952
     
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  7. majnoon

    majnoon Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    this reminds me of that song, your so vein:smug:
     
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  8. berylc

    berylc Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    My sister was a donated blood only once about 40 yrs ago. Taking the blood was no problem, the problem came after she had her cup of tea and a biscuit. She stood up to go home, promptly fainted and wet herself!!!! Needless to say she has never given blood again!
     
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  9. sofy

    sofy · Member

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    I found the hospitals r worse xx
     
  10. Providence 62

    Providence 62 LADA · Well-Known Member

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    I have the same problem and used to dread blood tests. Now I have my phlebotomist trained things are much better. Drink lots of water before you go to the test and walk as much as you can on the way. Tell the phlebotomist to try taking the the blood out of the back of your hand with a small (child's) butterfly - he/she will know what you mean. When they put the needle in, wiggle your toes. Tell them this is the easiest way for you if this works and DO NOT let them stab around. You are as entitled to a comfortable blood test as anyone else.

    Best of luck,

    P
    xxx
     
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  11. smag3

    smag3 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Oh my goodness I need one of these in my life! Are they available in the uk at all?
     
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  12. PattiT

    PattiT Type 2 · Active Member

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    I have the same problem - once the hospital had to draw blood from the big vein on the top of my foot. That was painful. Sorry, no tips :(
     
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  13. ickihun

    ickihun Type 2 · Master

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    Yes hydrate, keep moving as much as possible whilst waiting to be called in.
    I now know why the phlebotomists are located on the top floor of the hospitals. To get your blood flowing nicely!
     
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  14. Robbity

    Robbity Type 2 · Expert

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    I'm left handed and normally ask for my my blood to be taken from my right arm - which will always happily donate my blood without any problem. Last time for some reason we were going to use my left arm instead, and the nurse just could not get any blood out of it at all -my veins are actually much less visible and obviously quite unwilling to co-operate, so I suggested we just swapped over to my right arm because that would work, and all went well. (Though I think she thought at first I was a bit nuts!)

    She did ask if I was dehydrated - which I wasn't - I always drink enough to sink a ship anyway, it was just the wrong arm! :wideyed::D

    I have noticed though that some of the girls are much better at drawing blood than others: this last one left me with a whopping great bruise, but with some others I can never actually see that they've "stabbed" me....

    Robbity
     
    #34 Robbity, Mar 27, 2017 at 3:01 AM
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2017
  15. Daphne917

    Daphne917 Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    They usually take 3 attempts in each arm before they can get my blood! My sister in law us a phlebotomist and when she looked at my veins she said she was glad she didn't have to take my blood!
     
  16. miahara

    miahara Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Ha, I had my HbA1c test a few weeks back and the nurse had three stabs at my right arm before giving up and trying my left arm which worked. She told me I've got wobbly veins :)
     
  17. sofy

    sofy · Member

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    I do every time ,but I am overweight this doesn't help .iam trying to lose weight as I am diabetic and I too drink water before I go for test .I dnt think it helped much .still cudnt get it ,but in the end she did xx phew xx
     
  18. sofy

    sofy · Member

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    I tell the nurse a butterfly is best ,but they don't always take any notice and keep jabbing away .one time I nearly past out and started shaking,after about 6 times in different places and she still had to use a butterfly.xx
     
  19. sofy

    sofy · Member

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    I had one in my underarm .I nearly went through the roof .never again xx
     
  20. sofy

    sofy · Member

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    asking for that with the N.H.S in U.K is like asking for gold .can u buy it privately
     
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