Blood tests are essential to identify a person’s health situation correctly. The process is usually a requirement for medical records, especially when the person has been diagnosed with a particular disease. It’s an assessment of whether you have infections or to check if your organs are entirely healthy. Moreover, the blood draw isn’t only for health checkups but also for blood donations and transfusions. The person who is responsible for drawing out specimens is called a phlebotomist.
For medical checkups, a phlebotomist collects blood through arterial sampling, venipuncture sampling, or fingerstick sampling. Whereas for blood transfusion, the procedure would include a small needle injected into the vein connected by a rubber tube and then to a bag where the blood will be collected. It may sound easy, but a phlebotomist needs to find the right vein to acquire blood. They go through several training sessions and experiences to collect blood quickly. It is a necessary procedure that requires safety assurance. If not, it might result in pain, bruising, fainting, nerve damage, or hematoma.
The process might take longer than a second if the patient is a “difficult stick.” Blood drawing will be difficult when the patient has small or deep veins, rolling veins, collapsing veins, constricted vessels, or when dehydrated. If you are afraid of needles and have the following cases, it’s best to prepare yourself a day before the blood draw. Since many people have experienced it, Reddit has a discussion filled with advice for blood drawing preparation.
The discussion was started by a Life Pro Tip post from Whatshername_Stew. OP stated in her post, “Before getting blood drawn, make sure you’re well hydrated. It makes it easier for them to find a good vein and get the job done with as few pokes as possible. Pls add your blood draw tips, I’m always looking for more ways to be a better patient!” Apparently, veins are plumper if your body is hydrated — making it a lot more identifiable for phlebotomists.
OP received 5.2k upvotes from her post and 472 comments. Many Reddit Users shared their trick to make blood drawing quicker than ever. The comment section has various suggestions for different situations. Runzas_In_Wonderland replied, “If you start to feel even a bit woozy, speak up. And advocate for yourself if you know you have to be reclined to have blood drawn.” The person drawing your blood must be fully aware of your situation. You do not have to be embarrassed about not feeling well since it’s how your body works.
“If you are a difficult stick and someone did a great job drawing your blood, pay attention to where they stuck you and memorize that spot. Point it out in future appointments and it may save you some extra pokes :)” smurfingpenguin recommended. Letting the phlebotomist do their work is easier, but it’s much better to help them make the process quicker. It saves time, especially when other patients need to be given attention.
People from the comment section also approved the tip since it was tried and tested by them. “Someone just said this to me. I’m skinny, people always said I have good veins and it’s easy and this one wasn’t, and she said it was so hard to find this time because I was dehydrated. This tip is true,” windshieldwaves shared. If you have an upcoming appointment, ensure that you hydrate yourself and read the other tips from the Reddit discussion. You can also share your tips in the comment section, as other people might be waiting for yours.