Blood test help.

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Trixy_89 | 22:25 Wed 21st May 2008 | Health & Fitness
16 Answers
Hi, i've recently found out i have an under-active thyroid, to find that out i had to have a blood test which was done by a nurse at my doctors. The pain was barable and i left feeling faint and tired but fine after two hours. They tell me i may need to go back every month til they get the dosage right for my illness so i booked another for in a months time. Well, monday at 1.45 i went into the doctors again with my partner and saw the same nurse ( who i must admit, was a hard faced woman and didn't smile or talk much at all ). I walked in, sat down, said hi and she got straight to it. I've never squeezed my partners hand so hard, the pain f*** me. I burnt up and felt as if i was about to be sick on the spot, the nurse was saying how she cant seem to get much blood out cause i have thin vains and that only spots of blood was coming out, well by the time she'd pulled the needle out i was ready to pass out and i was laying down when she said, can i try the other arm, without a second thought i said no. She asked me if i want to rebook it again there or have it done at a hospital, i said i'd go to a hospital so i left. An hour after leaving the doctors i had a dead arm and i was in tears to my partner complaining of chest pain. The pain went and i went straight to bed after tea. The next day i felt a little better but my bruise came up alot worse and wasn't how i normally bruise after a blood test. Later on that day the dead arm and chest pain returned and went within 20 mins. Personally, i dont think she done it right cause the receptionist with quite concerned when the nurse said to her that i'd be booking in with a hospital. Today the bruising is still here and not gone down at all. Please could anyone offer any advice and help on how to deal with blood tests because i'm pregnant and i need to get over my fear, i also cant stand the sight of blood.

Sorry for the long message.
Thanks x


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I am really sorry but you are being an oversensitive wuss.
Dead arm and chest pain from someone sticking a needle in your arm! What do you imagine the phlebotomist did to you to make that happen?

the symptoms you describe could just as easily be attributed to panic on your part.

lots of people have to go to the hospital to get their bloods done, as the phlebotomists there do it all day every day so are more likely to coaz reluctant veins up to the surface.
it is normal to have a bruise after a blood test, especially if they had to fish around for a vein.

i dont have any advice to help you get over your fear, except get over it! if you had to have blood tests often, you would soon do that

how often will you have to have blood tests throught your pregnancy? the only thing i can think of is to warn whoever is about t take your blood you might faint, and sympathise with your predicament
the best advice i can give is that you dont watch the doc/nurse taking your blood, and after a couple of times, you will be fine. im not a fan of needles, but if you need a blood test, you need a blood test - bite the bullet!
Im afraid the bruising ect is normal, Ive had my arm butchered several times, some nurses are good some are a bit heavy handed.

you need to toughen up a bit because pregnancy is full of blood tests, relax about them, they are important to monitor your condition.

the dead arm and pain sounds like anxiety problems, you may not believe me but its highly likely given your slight overreaction to the blood test process, after a while you will get used to blood tests.

no they are not nice but they are necessary
I too have to have regular blood tests and though not pleasant i am getting immune to them you might indeed be advised to go to pathology at the hospital as thats all they do and are very professional at it, i find talking to the nurse or whoever throughout if you can (whilst looking away) helps
good luck with the babe
Tell her you are giving marks out of ten they love it when they get a high score and they try harder to be gentle and swift!!!
Oh dear Trixy. Bruising is quite normal and it's a fact that some nurses are quite rough, but the pain is not dreadful by any means. I think cazzz is spot on when she says that your chest pain, dead arm etc. is anxiety and panic. You are obviously a very anxious young lady because I remember your posting the other day when you banged yourself on the table.

You need to calm down. Take some deep breaths when you begin to feel anxious and try to relax. Talk to your doctor about your fears.

I hate to say this but if you are going to go through childbirth it is unlikely to be pain free!
trixy, my sister has problems cause you can hardly see any veins at all - ever. she was diagnosed with a thyroid problem last year and also went through the same as you to find the right dose of medication.
she was advised by one nurse to drink more water than ususal on the day of the blood test.. and since doing the water thing hasn't bruised nearly as bad because they find her veins first try.

When you sit down for the test ask which arm and look the other way. and switch your mind to something else... what to make for dinner, maybe, names for the baby. before you know it, it will be over.

i hope your next blood test is easier : )
Just try and relax as much as you can before you go in, especially if you are getting tense and wound up at the thought of having a blood test.

You could try some Bach's rescue remedy which is really good and physically relax (try dropping your jaw and shoulders and feeling your body relax so it's not so tense when the needle goes it). Breathe too so you don't tense up.

Maybe give yourself something to distract you, talk to the nurse, suck on a nice sweet etc...

See it as a challenge to get through it, that a little piece of needle isn't going to beat you and make you feel crap.

I have blood tests every 2 weeks at least and can't say they bother me. You can't change the bloodtests, just they way you react to them and let them affect you.
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Okay missing the point abit, i dont care about the bruising nor the pain, its the feeling i get after the blood test and during it thats the problem. yes i am a drama queen bout the blood test i had done before cause there not nice. but the last one didn't feel right and the pain nor bruising hasn't gone. hmmm does't matter u lot aren't friendly
Well I've had a number of blood tests over the years, and the only times I've been left with bruising or pain afterwards were when the nurse/phebotomist missed the vein.

There are two spots on the inside of your elbow where they can take a blood test (at least that's what the phlebotomist who did the last one told me), one is harder to hit, the other is easier but there is a nerve running right underneath it. Either way if the person doing the test misses, it hurts and leaves bruising.

So, if the nurse went for the easier spot and missed, yes your arm will hurt and you will be left with a delightful bruise. The best option is to get the tests done at the hospital where the phlebotomists have plenty of experience and don't miss too often.
well I don't mean to be unkind but if you can't cope having a blood test I wish you luck for the birth!! Honestly if you re read your question you have made yourself sound like a baby. As other people have said don't watch the needle being put in and tell them beforehand you are frightened, they might be more careful. As for the dead arm and chest pains, pull yourself together and get over it, just think that really ill children and adults that need regular medical treatment have to go through far worse than you have on a daily basis.
My 19 year old daughter has trouble when having blood tests done,she also has very small viens,the solution is to ask the person taking your blood to use a needle they would use for a child as they are thinner.
I had some bloods done at my rhumatology clinic the other day by a nurse who does bloods day in and day out.

I've got a bruise, sometimes I bruise sometimes I don't, just see it as one of those things, nothing to be worried about unless it get infected or something like that.

Im needle phobic as well and have gradually started to overcome my fears, you have to during pregnancy,.

what i would say though is ask for something called emla cream. It will numb the area totally and you wont feel the needle. Dont look and you wont know theyve done it!

It has to be put on half hour before the blood is taken to allow it to work but its really good stuff. I can now have bloods taken with no cream but it took a long time

as for childbirth, well i went without pain releif due to my fears but thats the choice you have to make, which is the lesser evil.

as for the chest pains, they are probably panic attacks due to your fear.
I was going to ask about whether they do numbing wipes, I know they put the antiseptic ones on first but do they have ones that can numb the area?
I am trying to work out why Trixy thinks we are not a friendly lot. I think we all gave her some helpful advice. Oh well.......................

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