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Vascular Surgery

Can`t draw blood from veins

02/20/2006

Question:

Hi...I am a 30 yr. old female recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia and unspecified connective tissue disease. In the past, there was never any difficulty placing an IV or drawing blood from me. Within the past month, it`s became nearly impossible. During IV placement, they get the needle inserted into the vein only to have it blow. When trying to draw blood, none will come out. I was actually sent home from the lab today and told they would try again tomorrow. (This was after 8 failed attempts by two different lab techs) When I asked them what the problem was, they just said they didn`t know. I was hoping you could shed some light on the subject. I haven`t spoken to my rheumatologist about it yet...perhaps it`s a complication of the connective tissue disease? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Answer:

Some people just have small reactive veins which make blood draws and IV placements difficult. Remaining well-hydrated and warm when you need any of these done can be helpful, but there is nothing specifically wrong with you as far as your veins go other the small size. Many women have this problem. Ask for an experienced phlebotomist or IV person when getting these done and mention you are a difficult draw/stick. Best of luck!

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Response by:

Amy B Reed, MD Amy B Reed, MD
No longer associated