This is a Flickr badge showing public photos from janipoo. Make your own badge here.
vampire tales
Mrs. Mogul had a funny post about the "non-sterile" technique of her mid-wife who was drawing blood. That brought to mind a few of my own remembrances as the woman behind the needle. If I had a buck for every time somebody has told me "I hate needles" I wouldn't even NEED Sugardaddy or his money. I'd be on a tropical island somewhere with a drink that has an umbrella in it. Instead, I've got 28 years worth of stories about people gettin'their blood drawn and doctors who act like asses.

Once, while on call, I was summoned to the Emergency Room in the early AM to draw some blood. I entered the room with my supplies and noticed the guy was mighty still and had one sock off. He had been dead for hours and laying in a ditch somewhere and was brought in by the local law. His highness, the ER doc wanted me to put the needle into the dead guy's heart to get blood for an alcohol level. I don't do dead people, no ifs ands or buts. If the heart ain't pumping to the veins and arteries, you're on your own Doc. {Poopie} exit stage left.

Sometimes, ER patients are shuffled back and forth from X-Ray to their rooms. Another night on call, wiping sleep from my eyes, I chased down the radiology tech so I could get my blood sample before they went into the inner chambers of neutrons and gamma rays. The lady was 105 years old. No sweat, I thought. This little 90 pound lady raised up off of that stretcher and grabbed my lab coat in just the right spot where she managed to knock me down. I pried her fingers off with the help of my co-worker. Seems as if I remember a very high BUN and potassium as in renal failure, way past hope for dialysis.

Part of our daily venipuncture duties used to be walking across the parking lot to the adjacent nursing home to draw blood from the residents. One guy in particular had a real thing for "titties" and would have to be restrained by staff in order to get his blood. One day I was feeling froggy and decided to tackle it by myself. No sooner did I get that needle in his arm than the other hand came around and pinched me where it hurt. Hard. I screamed for an aide to rescue me, and luckily I got away with the boobs intact and only slightly bruised. Bless his heart...he didn't know any better *wink wink*

Pediatric patients are a special challenge because of their fear of the entire healthcare experience. I've met two year olds with the bravery of generals who don't shed a tear. I've also seen eight or ten or TWELVE year olds who could kick the ass of a wrestler, usually in cahoots with an overprotective parent. This one lovely fourteen year old nut case wearing a chic capri set had the entire lab staff as a captive audience while she pitched a big one with her Mom in the waiting room because she "didn't wanna". Mom, being a lawyer and all, spent about an hour in "mediation" and then called Daddy by cellphone to come to the rescue. Before he ever got there, the deed was done. Gotta wonder about who's in charge there.

I could go on and on, but instead I'll just offer some timely tips for the healthcare consumer in need of blood work.

*There are certain phrases that one should never EVER utter to somebody who is about to stick a needle in them. For example: "You've got ONE chance" or "I hope you know what you're doing". Note to patient...the more relaxed your phlebotomist is with you, the easier the draw will be. Threats don't make for a good rapport with the blood sucker.

*If you are a parent, please don't tell your child "This won't hurt". Ditto for "You've been bad so here's your punishment." If you can't handle being a part of the process by bravely helping to hold your child's arm and working WITH us, please step outside and we'll manage without you. There ain't nothing like the sight of his distraught Mama to get a kid's siren going, even if it's not hurting a bit.

*If you truly know where your best vein is, please point it out up front. Any seasoned phlebotomist will appreciate the short-cut and act accordingly. If you have tiny veins the magic word is BUTTERFLY. Ask for it if you are a difficult draw. It's your right. Particularly in a physician's office where cost cutting measures often don't even allow their existence in the drawer. Tell that beloved doc of yours to get off the bucks and treat you right.

*RE: Corny jokes. We've heard 'em all hon, but if you're cute and sweet we'll laugh at them again because we like you. Just don't grab our body parts and everything's cool.

Thank goodness for team players. Because of them, I live to b**g about it all.
Powered by Blogger
Design by CyberVassals