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Why couldn't the midwives get blood out of my arm?

15 replies

colditz · 13/09/2005 18:25

I have a phobia of needles, but the midwives at my local birth centre are just fabulous about it.

I had to go for a blood test today, and had EMLA on my arm and Entinox gas.

I was very frightened, but not as bad as I have been for previous blood tests. however, despite trying two different sites, she could only get 2.5 ml, so I have to go back another day!

This seems totally unfair! Does anyone have a clue what happened?

OP posts:
Whizzz · 13/09/2005 18:29

I also have veins that only skillful people can find !
Request the thinnest needle they have & really try & relax & take deep breaths when they do it (I know its hard - but practice!)

Whizzz · 13/09/2005 18:29

If you tense up - so do your veins

RosiePosie · 13/09/2005 18:34

I declined my blood tests this time around because I hate it so much. However, I've no real reason to have them done anyway. If there was a reason, I guess I would have to go for it. They can never get any blood out of my arms either, and in previous pregnancies I've always insisted that I go to the bloods department at the hospital, rather than let the MW's have a go - atleast the people there do it day in, day out and have more experience.

Whizzz · 13/09/2005 18:38

Yes I agree - hospital dept is much better (although maybe not in terms of nerves !).

My 1st midwife appointment with DS left me with an enormous bruise (which I then had to hide until it had gone) & not one drop of blood taken !

lanismum · 13/09/2005 18:51

im a phlebotomist, and sometimes veins collapse after only giving up a small amount, sometimes this is due to them being very scarred from repeated blood tests/infusions, or maybe the person taking the blood poked about too much and the vein swelled up and wouldnt bleed. maybe you just have very difficult veins to find, you could try asking for your bloods to be taken from the back of your hand next time (this sometimes works better with kids)

geogteach · 13/09/2005 19:17

I always had to go to the phlebotomist, but there was one who visited the surgery every morning so I didn't have to go to the hospital and as somebody else said they are used to doing it all the time and tend to be more successful

MaryBS · 13/09/2005 19:20

I've always found that if I give blood when I am warm then they find the vein easier and it comes out easier.

I presume its because if you're warm your veins are nearer the surface and dilate to remove heat from the body?????

BibiTwo · 13/09/2005 19:37

I am the same colditz. Deep veins and I'm a cowardy custard to boot! I'm also a fainter and have a horrible time giving blood. Only one midwife in our surgery can get it out of me and I think it's because I feel more relaxed around her. She makes me talk non stop and encourages the long, slow, deep breaths. She makes me look at something else in the room and describe it to her while she asks me about it. I feel like a total numpty describing the height chart and soap dispenser, but it's MUCH better than being stuck 3 or 4 times because no blood will come. So ask your m/w can you talk nonsense to her, or ask her to interrogate you about something.
Trying to relax (not easy when there's someone leeching blood from your veins) does help. Honest. And if you can't relax, distraction is a close second!

Good luck next time.

spacecadet · 13/09/2005 19:39

it can be more difficult to take blood if you havent drunk very much either.

Ericblack · 13/09/2005 21:02

Me too. At my GP the practice nurse can do it instantly though as she's had so much experience. Before my amnio they had to search the hospital for a junior doctor as they failed three times and ended up taking it out of the back of my hand where the skin is paper thin and covered with liver spots and the veins jut out.

mummyhill · 14/09/2005 08:55

Colditz - My veins are rubbish as well and I find it very traumatic, which doesn't help when you have to have blood taken every three months routinley due to medical problems, try getting them to stick one of your hands in warm water and use a butterfly in the back of the other one. This is the only way they could get any out of me the last couple of times I have been.

Hausfrau · 14/09/2005 09:02

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ChaCha · 14/09/2005 10:00

I feel a tad faint just reading this thread! [looks squeamish and goes shade of green]

m/w actually refused to take my blood at 1st appt as i made such a fuss and sent me to Haemotology at local hospital. Nurse was great and after a few minutes of feeling a bit dizzy walked away feeling v.proud myself!

At m/w appt last week was told that they can't find my results for the rhesus neg/infections test and that I have to go back for 2 tests!! I am dreading it but am hoping it's over in the same fashion as the last one.

Glad to know there are others who just do not DO blood! .... faints.....

colditz · 14/09/2005 19:12

Oh Chacha, I know how you feel. I have had no end of Health Professionals refuse point blank to deal with me.

Doesn't help when you feel ashamed of yourself already, does it?

OP posts:
littlerach · 14/09/2005 19:39

In my first pregnancy they could never get blood outof me.
In the end they had to do the back of my hand, anf run warm water over it. It used to really worry me when I went.

But next time round they managed fine, although I was v nervous!

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