Monday, January 12, 2009

Stevie Wonder could have done better...

I have been having a lot of medical tests lately...I know that I have referred to these tests in some of my previous posts. Most of the tests require blood work and a technician or nurse usually are the ones drawing the blood! ( I know duh) I have never been afraid of needles .. I wasn't ever a fan of being stuck with a needle, but I held my own and got through it. I really didn't have anything to complain about in that area before.

Now when I see anybody coming towards me with a needle, panic sets in and I want to bolt to the nearest exit. I usually talk myself out of bolting and being stressed out by assuring myself with logic and statistics ...and the fact that I'll just have to return to probably the same office and let them poke me again! (That's usually the one that works). Besides I am always sure that I can explain to whomever is poking me, that I might not be an easy case and would they please use a butterfly needle and to be alert because my veins roll.

Without being graphic ...let me just say this ... Stevie Wonder could do a better job.. at drawing my blood then the techs and nurses that I have had lately!
I can usually tell that the techs and nurse aren't listening to me when I tell them these things about my veins, they never stop what they're doing ,they grab their rubber tie, wrap it around my upper arm and go at it with their choice of a needle.
Then after they are done poking holes in my first arm they reach for the second. I try and explain again that the smallest butterfly needle usually works....So after many tries, to many to count, they mumble that they have never had this happen before and they just don't understand what could be wrong!
Then they reach for my foot...
....are you kidding me!

I realize that I'm not the easiest candidate for them to draw blood from...but I can't believe that I'm the only one that's so difficult that the last time I ended up with a blown vein that hurt for a month and bruised like never before. ..

Anyway...I am here to say that...I have had enough, no more will I let myself be the lamb on the way to the slaughter house. No more will I be hopeful and grin and bear it. No more will I hope for the best and only get the worst.
I have decided that anytime anyone comes near me with a needle, I am going to first get their complete attention and make them look me in the eyes. I will then ask them what their experience is in drawing blood... that I need someone that has had many years of experience with small, rolling veins!
I will then ask them what size needle they would use for people with small veins. If it's not the smallest butterfly or even better, a needle that they use on small children, then

I'm out of there!

Thank goodness, the lab tech at my internists office is the best so far....So I make a promise to myself, that I am only going to go to their office for blood work and then request that they fax the results to chicago.
That's my promise to me..!


  1. Oh, I couldn't agree with you more! What is it they don't understand! That's a great promise to make to yourself! and KEEP it!

  2. Good for you, Peggy, and good luck!

    Sometimes I come home from the doctor or hospital so angry with myself for what I've just put up're right, there's nothing wrong with standing up for ourselves.

    Good luck at your next appointment; I hope it goes well.

  3. Oh my gosh. I'm cringing for you. :(

    You demand attention girl! There's no reason you should put up with extra pain because some people don't want to listen or care enough to help you with a little comfort.

    I swear they better listen... I'd hate to have to come out there and clock a few lab techs for you!

  4. I have the same issues that you encountered. At my rheumatologist's office where I have bloodwork 4x a year, I have found that 'Tina' is the most successful, and so I ask for her every time. When I have to go anywhere else like the lab at the local hospital, I tell them that I am not an easy draw, and I point to the one spot[right arm, elbow inside, right side]and say,"This is the vein that works best![for 20 years...same vein!]
    You are smart to tell them what works for you. Besides, you are the one getting poked!
    Good luck in future tests.

  5. I don't care how often I have blood drawn, there's still that moment of complete panic as I wonder if the one doing the drawing knows what he/she is doing. Some do, some don't. Some care about the patient, some don't seem to. You have every right to demand their attention and expertise!

  6. Girl, I feel your pain!!! I had to have a series of blood draws while pregnant - they drew blood every 15 minutes or so for a couple of hours. (Blood sugar testing for gestational diabetes.) I was in hysterics when I finally left and it took me most of the day to calm down. I am supposed to have it done again now, but I am too terrified to go!! :-(

  7. I remember them trying to get Jon's blood when he was dehydrated and his veins were collapsed at Great Lakes Naval Base again, of course. Art sat while the corpsman in training probed and probed... the both of them (Jon and Art) trying to be macho. After 20 minutes Art came out and asked me to sit with him. I saw what was happening and told the corpsman, "THIS has been going on for 20 minutes? Please PLEASE get a doctor in here." They did. And the job was done. I hate getting stabbed and by golly, we have to tell them. Please, Peg. You are too nice. I know you. You tell them! You can tell them we ALL told you to tell them. Sheesh!


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