"Whoops. Wrong Needle."

  • eckilegs

    Posts: 223

    Mar 05, 2011 9:18 PM GMT
    So I finally have health insurance through work and have been going to see doctors/specialists/dentist this week just to make sure that my biological mechanics are operating properly. My family doctor sent me to get some blood work to ensure I'm doing ok.

    So I get into this lab yesterday with this technician who I had to guess was about 21-22 years old. I'm not the biggest fan of needles or blood extraction, but I know it's necessary. I was surprisingly not as nervous as I feel I've been in the past about getting blood drawn. I sit in the chair, and don't look as she pricks my arm. Nothing major, not a big deal. I'm doing fine. Until halfway through the 2nd tube of blood, she says, "Whoops. Wrong Needle."

    icon_eek.gificon_eek.gificon_eek.gif

    So I have what I can only describe as a panic button moment and start asking what she's talking about. I honestly don't remember any of my half of the conversation. I was either too freaked out or the soon to arrive dizzy spell I had wiped my memory of it. After realizing that "wrong needle" is something you probably should not say to someone before, during or after taking their blood. She explained to me that the size of the needle she pulled should have been in a different labeled container, and that the size of the needle was why the extraction was taking so long So I spent most of yesterday being a hypochondriac after the experience. My energy for the rest of today and even today has been off. I know it's unlikely, but I'm somewhat worried of the idea there could have been something "wrong" with said needle other than it's size.

    For the humorists : I realize this story is probably funnier when you hear about it happening to someone else. Anything similar happen to any of you where something someone said totally messed you up and had you worried?

    For the medical enthusiasts : Yesterday was probably the most blood I've ever had extracted at one time in my life. I spend the day at work yesterday feeling really out of it. And I'm still a little bit out of it today. Is this normal? Apparently, I was supposed to drink a lot of water or juice afterwards? No one at the clinic told me this.

    For the Legal buffs : In the probably impossible/unlikely event of something going haywire with my health as a result of this needle thing, any advice? icon_cool.gificon_redface.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 05, 2011 9:38 PM GMT
    Calm your self little grass hopper you don't want to mess yourself!

    Now wrong size needle is okay she just grabbed the wrong one and it would have taken longer for the amount of vilas she needed to fill.

    I have a massive phobia of needles and I feel horrible all day after getting blood taken and iv had to have a lot of them so your fine.

    You just got a good startle relax take a deep breath all is well!

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    Mar 05, 2011 10:53 PM GMT
    As I was reading your story I predicted what she probably was referring to was a wrong size needle.

    I have passed out many times due to needles but, when I was diagnosed with stage three testicular cancer I had to get use to them quickly. I still don't watch and when they would give me an IV they were always good about covering it up after setting one up.

    I never thought there would come a day I would have to give myself injections (immune boosters) and it was either that or get deathly ill. You would be surprised what you can do if your life depends upon it.


  • gallus81

    Posts: 350

    Mar 06, 2011 1:38 AM GMT



  • camfer

    Posts: 891

    Mar 06, 2011 1:42 AM GMT
    Maybe you could consider calling the lab and speaking with the lab tech again in order to calm your fears. It might give you some relief from this spiral of thoughts. You can ask her anything that is worrying you.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 06, 2011 1:49 AM GMT
    eckilegs saidSo I finally have health insurance through work...

    For the Legal buffs : In the probably impossible/unlikely event of something going haywire with my health as a result of this needle thing, any advice? icon_cool.gificon_redface.gif


    forget the legal BS. when we draw blood we can choose a 23-gauge butterfly for comfort. but if there are a lot of tubes to draw, we don't want the person sitting there forever, so we'll use a 21-gauge butterfly (smaller gauge, larger bore) to speed things up. that's all she meant. she didn't use a previously-used needle on you!
  • starboard5

    Posts: 969

    Mar 06, 2011 1:56 AM GMT
    I don't draw blood but I believe, depending on what tests your doctor ordered, the results might be effected by using a needle with too small a bore. A tiny needle can cause hemolysis of the blood cells making the sample useless.
    http://www.clinchem.org/cgi/content/short/46/2/306?rss=1&ssource=mfc
  • Brded1dr

    Posts: 45

    Mar 06, 2011 2:20 AM GMT
    There is no way they used a dirty needle on you. The technician would have to have attached an unwrapped needle to the syringe that they just found lying around. I promise, they didn't. Needles are treated with the utmost care and are disposed of in biohazard containers immediately after use. Chill dude.
  • samasaurusrex

    Posts: 84

    Mar 06, 2011 3:35 AM GMT
    Why would you assume there was anything else wrong with the needle? It's not like she had a used one laying around as well as a sterilized one. Lol. At least I hope that wasn't the case.
  • eckilegs

    Posts: 223

    Mar 06, 2011 8:50 AM GMT
    Haha, thanks guys.

    Sorry if I went a little cuckoo for cocoa puffs, I tried to not make it seem that way. I know the odds of getting a dirty needle are pretty slim to none, but it's something that could happen. It's probably because I've never had so much blood taken, and I was still feeling out of it today (24 hours later) when i wrote this and was starting to get worried. All is good now. My energy is back up, and I don't foresee any problems.

    At the end of the day, I still think it's an odd thing to stay when you're drawing blood from someone, but I'm glad I now know that getting the wrong size needle isn't exactly uncommon.

    Thanks again!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 06, 2011 9:01 AM GMT
    Oh ya poor baby!! Well the other guy pretty much explained what she actually meant so you can relax....

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 06, 2011 9:02 AM GMT
    The only thing I got out of this thread: Size DOES matter. icon_lol.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 06, 2011 9:19 AM GMT
    Glad to see you can laugh about it now.

    I would do nothing about this incident.
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    Mar 06, 2011 9:37 AM GMT
    Hmmm similar story kind of like yours, the female nurse put in the wrong gage (it was the larger one) it wasn't really an issue until they had to change the vials they needed to collect since they were testing for anemia and a range of other things. I'm not exactly sure what went wrong with it but during the the change between vials, instead of the blood flow stopping (which would be expected with the set up) it continued and it was doing so at a nice click. As a result the blood started running down my arm while she was turned around and then continued while she tried to figure out what to do... It ended up on my jeans and the white T I was wearing.

    Anyways she decided that the best method to deal with this was to hand me some paper towel and she would just change the vials really quick... this resulted in the needle traveling further and further up the artery that was 'tapped.' Uncomfortable to say the least, that is until it struck the other side... then it was just painful! Needless to say she had to readjust it and then finish the last vial of 3, and at this point I'm kind of done with the whole process.

    But were not done yet... After the nurse had filled the last one she took the needle out and well because I'm apparently a profuse bleeder it took a while for the tiny little hole to clot lol. She tried to make a joke of it, something about the wrong gage and next time going for a smaller size, which usually I'm all for but it didn't fly well with me at the time... Needless to say I left there with just enough blood on my cloths too look slightly suspicious... I bet people were wondering if I had killed her given how long I was behind the little fabric curtain... my expression probably didn't help. I've never felt so scrutinized by strangers in my life walking out of there.

    Cheers to medical history horror stories! (I have more... and they get better!)
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 06, 2011 9:40 AM GMT
    I've had "whoops missed the vain, but we'll just try the other arm", which didn't inspire much confidence, my vains are HUGE.

    The entire situation kind of reminds me of Will and Grace icon_razz.gif

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 06, 2011 11:33 AM GMT
    Hey it's Dot from MadTv icon_biggrin.gif

    Anyone else remember that?