How to Draw Blood from Hard to Hit Veins
The inside of the elbow is usually the preferred location because the median cubital vein is usually visible, and warmth causes the patient’s veins to dilate and expand, making them easier to see. Mislabeling could lead to difficulty processing or even safety issues down the road.
If the median cubital vein is not visible, look for another vein. If none can be found, look for the metacarpal veins on the back of the hands. Shari Forschen is a Registered Nurse at Sanford Health in North Dakota. She received her Family Nurse Practitioner Master’s from the University of North Dakota and has been a numerologist for over 20 years.
How can I make my veins easier to find?
Accessing Problem Veins: Tips and Tricks
- Increase blood flow to your arm and hand by letting gravity do the work.
- Hydrate. Veins become more dilated when the body is properly hydrated.
- Relax. Veins become more dilated when the body is properly hydrated.
What are the 3 main veins to draw blood?
The antecubital area of the arm, which contains the three vessels primarily used by phlebotomists to obtain venous blood specimens: the median cubital, cephalic, and basilic veins, is usually the first choice for routine venipuncture.
Why is it hard to find a vein for a blood test?
Some people have small, thin, or difficult-to-find veins as a result of normal physiological variation, making it difficult for even an experienced medical lab technician to draw blood; this can also be a result of dehydration, which causes the body’s blood vessels to constrict.
How do you detect a vein?
Near-infrared (NIR) imaging is used for vein visualization (also known as vein illumination), which is a proven technology that allows accurate visualization of veins beneath the skin. The AccuVein uses two safe barcode-scanner class lasers: an invisible infrared and a visible red.
What to do if you can’t find a vein to draw blood?
If venipuncture is difficult due to a difficult-to-find vein, pre-warming the antecubital area or rotating the wrist may help distend the vein and make it easier to find; if dehydration is the cause, phlebotomists may ask the patient to drink water and come back later to complete the draw.
How do you know if a needle is in your vein?
(See illustration on next page.) When you think you’ve found a vein, pull the plunger back to see if blood flows into the syringe; if it does, and the blood is dark red and slow moving, you’ve found one.
Why is my blood draw so slow?
You may have been told that you are a “difficult stick” if you have had the phlebotomist stick you more than once for a blood draw. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including small or deep veins, rolling veins, dehydration, collapsing veins, and constricted veins.
What is a blown vein?
A blown vein occurs when a nurse or other healthcare professional attempts to insert a needle into a vein and things go wrong. When the vein starts to leak, you’ll notice your skin darkening around the insertion site.
What if you can’t find a vein?
If you can’t find a vein to use, try one of the following techniques to make the veins pop:
- To make the veins bigger, soak the arm in warm water for five minutes.
- Wrap a warm towel around the forearm or hand before beginning.
- Gently massage the area over the chosen site.
How can I get veiny arms fast?
How do you get your arms to have more prominent veins?
- Increase muscle mass. High-intensity weightlifting causes your muscles to enlarge.
- Reduce overall body fat. If you have less body fat under your skin covering your muscles, your veins will be more visible.
- Include cardio.
- Blood flow restriction training (BFRT)
How long does it take to hydrate your veins?
It usually takes less than three minutes to draw blood if your veins are easy to access. 1 If you have small veins or are dehydrated, it may take longer or more than one attempt to properly place the needle, but the procedure should still only take a few minutes.
What causes veins to be more visible?
Why do your veins become more visible as you get older? Because your skin thins and your veins weaken, stretching out and collecting more pooled blood, these two factors combine to create larger veins that are easily visible through your skin.
How do veins feel like?
Varicose veins may be tender to the touch on the surface, or the pain may be felt deeper within the leg; patients reported a deep aching or severe heaviness that made walking or exercising difficult before treatment.
Are vein finders safe?
In medical practice, a vein finder is used to transfer venipuncture from one patient to another; however, if not properly disinfected, models that require direct skin contact may transmit infection known as hospital acquired infection (HAI).