Bowel cancer treatment and side effects

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hev

Difficulties with taking bloods

Since start of my diagnosis my veins have been difficult to take blood-often vein would appear but fall down. This was made worse after chemo treatment
Having blood taken then became such a hurdle.
At times would manage easily and then other times several failed attempts which at times left me feeling so low. As most people not a fan needles but it becomes part of what has to be done but for me and I know many others becomes upsetting and frustrating.
Hope this helps anyone but tell your nurse/ phlebotomist before that you have issues with getting blood out- majority will listen and just spend bit of time checking before just trying to draw out blood. I had couple times when it was rather painful and this kind of made me so anxious about blood tests rather than concentrating on my recovery after operation.
When right person takes blood they really know their stuff and if you are in hospital post op and this is issue staff taking care of you will probably ask for a&e doctor to visit and in my case -assessed arms which by then were black n blue - took time and blood taken first time
Good luck everyone as I know from being 11 days in hospital this is huge issue for many of us

kate45

Hi @hev. Thanks for this. My husband really struggles with having his bloods taken. It can often take several attempts and he comes home black and blue. He will be having more bloods today so I will pass on your advice. :x:

hev

@kate45 please please tell your husband to make sure they listen
I totally understand his struggles
My veins just sunk after chemo and tried soaking in hot water/had vascular nurse try.
You can ask for machine which sees veins under ultra violet although I never had that. I expect same for your hubby the blood test ends up being a hurdle which on top of everything else you just don’t need
Good luck :x::x:

kate45

Hi @hev. Just wanted to say thanks for the advice. My husband specifically told the nurse that they always have trouble taking his bloods. She took extra time to find a good vein and managed it first attempt ! :x::x:

hev

@kate45 so glad nurse listened
That’s all needed
Bit extra time checking veins nearly always helped
As said taking of blood ended up being a major hurdle and made me so anxious- good luck for future blood tests

hihatt89

Hi@hev. My veins are pretty rubbish which is why I opted for a PICC line for my 12 sessions of chemo. When I need blood taken prior to chemo (practice nurse at GP not qualified to take blood through PICC line), I have it taken through a butterfly either in hand or wrist. Quick, painless and successful every time. Maybe a thought for you ?

Amanda Sandham

I struggle to part with blood. As you say, someone who really knows what they are doing helps so much. I try to make sure my hands are warm as this makes things easier. In the past, I have had blood taken from my foot when all else has failed. It is also difficult to get a cannula into my hand making contrast scans an absolute pain.

hev

@hihatt89 @Amanda Sandham
For me the blood tests which was many as in hospital needed more tests to Ensure medication correct it did become a hurdle as when feeling unwell very upsetting at times- it is about person taking the blood listening and taking time- whenever that time given them blood was successful
I had many times of soaking arm in warm water and calling for vascular nurse to try take blood.
But always when seemed like no vein popping up the person who took that bit of extra time managed to get that blood out.
I got to point that I was getting too distressed when trying to get blood out rather than concentrating on what else was going on…..
Good luck to everyone out there

Amanda Sandham

@hev when I had my LAR, u had a catheter, a drain, a drip in my right arm and a cannula in my left foot. Then they told me that I needed to get out of bed and walk around!

hev

So many different stories In this chat