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Swollen arm after blood test


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Old 08-04-2010, 16:48
x_malibubabe
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I had blood taken this morning at the hospital and the nurse couldn't get any out of my left arm so tried on my right. I normally have blood taken from my left arm with no problems... She managed to get some from my right arm which is absolutely fine.

My left arm however, is really sore and a bit swollen, it aches when I try lift it up. I've had many blood tests and never had this before the swelling/aching came up pretty much straight away and I asked the nurse and she said it's normal, but it's not for me! I'm now worrying she's done something wrong...surely this shouldn't happen literally as soon as she pulls out the needle?

Anyone had this before? I need my arm back I've got loadsa uni work to do
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Old 08-04-2010, 17:00
4pounds64
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Sounds to me like she's bruised/broken the vein in her mission to get the blood out - phlebotomists are ruthless!

Not much you can do sadly, maybe try an ice pack to numb it and bring down the swelling?

If your a bit paranoid (complete sympathies, I have a tendancy to imagine the worst) you could try circling the swollen area with a pen, if it gets bigger between now and say 9pm give NHS direct a call.
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Old 08-04-2010, 17:11
Lippincote
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I had a swollen arm after a blood test last year - normally I have no problem. It was really painful, I could barely bend my arm to drive home. After a day or two an enormous bruise erupted, it looked horrendous. It was so big it was still there two weeks later when I went for another blood test! The phlebotomist said it was because not enough pressure was applied afterwards so the blood just kept oozing inside my arm. It wasn't pleasant but it sorted itself out. Something similar may have happened to you.
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Old 08-04-2010, 17:30
Angelsbaby
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Sometimes when you take blood if the needle goes through the vein it causes the area to blow up or swell. Simply putting pressure on it immediately can make it go down again. You will find that it will settle down over the course of today but you might be left with a bit of a bruise and discomfort for a day or two.
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Old 09-04-2010, 22:22
x_malibubabe
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Thanks for your replies guys

The swelling has gone down a bit now but there's a small lump where the needle went in. I'll see how it goes over the next few days, probably worrying over nothing as usual probably won't help that I work in a bar lugging crates and huge bottles and stuff around lol
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Old 09-04-2010, 22:35
curmy
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Put an ice pack on it, and please look after yourself. She sounds a rubbish nurse !
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Old 10-04-2010, 10:20
Abbasolutely 40
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I had blood taken this morning at the hospital and the nurse couldn't get any out of my left arm so tried on my right. I normally have blood taken from my left arm with no problems... She managed to get some from my right arm which is absolutely fine.

My left arm however, is really sore and a bit swollen, it aches when I try lift it up. I've had many blood tests and never had this before the swelling/aching came up pretty much straight away and I asked the nurse and she said it's normal, but it's not for me! I'm now worrying she's done something wrong...surely this shouldn't happen literally as soon as she pulls out the needle?

Anyone had this before? I need my arm back I've got loadsa uni work to do
It does happen , the vessels blow and the area gets swollen ,.The best thing for any bruising like that is arnica cream .I had the most horrendous bruising from attempts to get a line in on a shut down body ,( long story )My friend brought arnica cream and I swear by it now for all swelling and bruising .
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Old 10-04-2010, 10:21
Abbasolutely 40
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Put an ice pack on it, and please look after yourself. She sounds a rubbish nurse !
A little unfair , you dont know the circunstances, these things happen .
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Old 10-04-2010, 10:23
susie-4964
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A little unfair , you dont know the circunstances, these things happen .
Especially with people who, shall we say, are quite well covered, and it's hard to find the vein. Skinny blokes are the best, you couldn't miss with a blindfold on!
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Old 10-04-2010, 11:00
Abbasolutely 40
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Especially with people who, shall we say, are quite well covered, and it's hard to find the vein. Skinny blokes are the best, you couldn't miss with a blindfold on!
Try getting a line in on a prem baby !!! LOL
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Old 10-04-2010, 11:06
Lippincote
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I'm not particularly well covered, and the nurse didn't have any trouble finding a vein - the issue in my case was the lack of pressure applied afterwards. It was done at the GP surgery and the nurse didn't stress the importance of applying pressure - in the phlebotomy clinic they have a notice up about it, and they also tape dental rolls over the site aftewards rather than just a plaster.

The phlebotomist also told me it is important not to do heavy work (like lugging crates!) in the few hours after a blood test as that can also causing oozing & bruising.
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Old 10-04-2010, 16:19
x_malibubabe
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Especially with people who, shall we say, are quite well covered, and it's hard to find the vein. Skinny blokes are the best, you couldn't miss with a blindfold on!
By well covered I presume you mean fat. My vein is visible on the arm and no nurses/phlebotomists have ever had any trouble taking blood from it before, just this one.

The phlebotomist also told me it is important not to do heavy work (like lugging crates!) in the few hours after a blood test as that can also causing oozing & bruising.
See I weren't told this. I'm a student I can't afford not to work.

It's okay now anyway, worrying over nothing
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Old 10-04-2010, 17:10
curmy
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Gad it's alright now.
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