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Daydreaming
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2 weeks ago I went to the ER and found out I have a huge cyst. I don't think it's cancerous, but I then had to see another doctor (ugh) and they wanted to do all these tests and were talking about surgery and wanted me to have blood tests done. I said NO!!!!!!!!!!! :eek: and have managed to avoid them since.

Well...I don't want to deal with any of this at all. I hate it. I very much dislike doctors, hospitals, anything to do with them and I have a huge fear of needles. But today I was finally thinking, okay...I want them to check to be sure I don't have cancer and I want to know other stuff too that they can find out....but I still can't handle it. I don't know if I can do it.

My two main fears is if I'll freak out, panic etc so bad...and lose control and all that, and embarrass myself and cause a problem, or if something goes wrong....and there's sooo much that could go wrong. To name some they could mess up, I could faint, it could somehow hurt or damage me, they could do the test wrong and get wrong results...just anything! Also worried about who the person is...if they are young or old (older people are better, not so nervous around them) how experienced they are, what they are like, how they act...etc. Also, it's just all so awkward having a blood test. (if you haven't already guessed, I have never had a blood test before in my arm, only a finger prick and that was a nightmare when I was a kid)

Any advice? :um
 

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Wow, you're EXACTLY like me about this. Probably my number one fear... omgggggggg, it's such a huge massive fear for me. I've never had mine drawn either. I NEVER WANT TO. idk what to do...


:(

I'm queasy just thinking about it/wanting to cry/pass out. This has been a problem for me my whole life and idk how to get passed it.
 

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Well, somehow I don't fear getting shot or giving blood for a test. I just think it won't harm me in any way, unless it is some huge syringe of course.. I was very afraid of it as a younger kid, though. Maybe the lack of fear is because we had lots of fun with the syringes as kids, using them to shoot water at each other (without the needle part, naturally). :b

I remember once in school they showed a movie about drug addicts and some girls even fainted when the needle came up. :um
 

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I used to be the same. When I was in school we went on an outing to the blood bank and I had to be carried out after seeing the first needle! Then I got tattoos and it turned out to be like flooding therapy and now I can even watch the needle go in and not tense up when I have blood taken.
 

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As someone who pokes people daily with needles, I have never quite understood the needle-fear when it comes to drawing blood, since the needle used is quite tiny but suffice to say I would guesstimate that at least 90% of people have some sort of needle phobia. I would freak out over a LP or something like that, but the common 21 gauge needle is far smaller than what they even use for IVs.

However, the docs cannot help you unless you submit to the tests. I can assure you that tests are carefully monitored on analyzers and very accurate. Ask them to use a 23 gauge butterfly (blue one). Turn your head, go to your happy place and let them do what they have to do.
 

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unashamed perv
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The first thing to do is make an appointment to have your tests. Explain while making your appointment that you have a fear of needles. The person doing the test ought to respect your feelings and be gentle and considerate, letting you stay in control. If you get someone who says "don't be silly," insist on getting someone else to do it. Most phlebotomists in this country are trained to take blood from the vein on the inside of the elbow, but there are plenty of other veins that could be used, though I'm guessing they all horrify you equally?

Ask yourself, what's the worst that could happen?

You could faint. Not the end of the world; unpleasant but survivable. You say "they could mess up" but really, there's not a lot you can mess up taking a blood sample. The worst they could do is bruise you. This has happened to me, and it's really not a big deal. It's not painful, and you don't even notice it until after the fact.

A really simple and effective distraction technique is to count backwards, out loud, from a hundred. Be brave and go for it, good luck :)
 

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Health first, fear second! Put it on the back burner...and possibly leave it there lol.

Blood tests are really quite simple. They hardly bother me at all now, I can even watch. The only thing I ever worry about is how professional the nurse is. But how hard can it be?

All the shots we had to get in school bothered me though...since they actually hurt. Just remember it's for the better and I'm sure you'll be glad you did it (assuming that you will).
 

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The first thing to do is make an appointment to have your tests. Explain while making your appointment that you have a fear of needles. The person doing the test ought to respect your feelings and be gentle and considerate, letting you stay in control. If you get someone who says "don't be silly," insist on getting someone else to do it. Most phlebotomists in this country are trained to take blood from the vein on the inside of the elbow, but there are plenty of other veins that could be used, though I'm guessing they all horrify you equally?
I dont know anyone at the hospital I work at that would say "dont be silly" to anyone. And we will even draw blood with the person lying down, in case they feel faint. If someone did say that, I wouldnt let them draw my blood either. That is an excellent point, one should feel comfortable with health care providers.

And you are right, you can draw blood from any number of veins although the antecubital (elbow area) is preferred, because its the least painful spot. Not that it really hurts.

Chances are you (the OP) are young and have excellent veins. Should be quick.
 

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I really don't have that fear. I used to, but then I got anemia and had to get shots every two weeks for months, so now, I could care less about needles.
If I find out I need a shot or IV, I just think, 'get it over with', and that's it.
 

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Ask them to draw blood with a baby butterfly needle. Those things are painless. For the fear, just close your eyes and think happy thoughts.
 

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Ask them to draw blood with a baby butterfly needle. Those things are painless. For the fear, just close your eyes and think happy thoughts.
A "baby" butterfly is a 25 gauge needle which is so small it can easily hemolyze the blood, which is basically busting up the red blood cells which will ruin the sample. There is a 23 gauge butterfly needle that is slightly bigger but far more preferred.

As someone who draws blood, I find it amusing when someone says "can you draw me with a butterfly", not seeming to realize a 21 gauge butterfly is same exact sized needle as a straight needle. Its just a different way to hold it.

Hospitals prefer lab workers use straight needles, as they cost significantly less than butterflies. I tend to use butterflies quite a bit.
 

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I have the same problem with needles. A few weeks ago I found out right when I was in the doctor's office that I was going to have blood taken that day before I left. I was fine when the needle was in me, but when they took it out I almost passed out. For some reason, when needles are removed from me it triggers something psychologically and I go crazy. you're definitely not alone w/ the needles thing.
 

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2 weeks ago I went to the ER and found out I have a huge cyst. I don't think it's cancerous, but I then had to see another doctor (ugh) and they wanted to do all these tests and were talking about surgery and wanted me to have blood tests done. I said NO!!!!!!!!!!! :eek: and have managed to avoid them since.

Well...I don't want to deal with any of this at all. I hate it. I very much dislike doctors, hospitals, anything to do with them and I have a huge fear of needles. But today I was finally thinking, okay...I want them to check to be sure I don't have cancer and I want to know other stuff too that they can find out....but I still can't handle it. I don't know if I can do it.

My two main fears is if I'll freak out, panic etc so bad...and lose control and all that, and embarrass myself and cause a problem, or if something goes wrong....and there's sooo much that could go wrong. To name some they could mess up, I could faint, it could somehow hurt or damage me, they could do the test wrong and get wrong results...just anything! Also worried about who the person is...if they are young or old (older people are better, not so nervous around them) how experienced they are, what they are like, how they act...etc. Also, it's just all so awkward having a blood test. (if you haven't already guessed, I have never had a blood test before in my arm, only a finger prick and that was a nightmare when I was a kid)

Any advice? :um
I HATE NEEDLES. What I usually do is tell the people that I don't want to see the needle and then take a towel or something to cover my eyes. I tell them in advance I can't see the needle from beginning to end. So I cover my eyes with a towel from start to finish. This helps me a lot. But the medical staff think this is funny. They don't laugh out loud, but I can tell they think this is funny. But its the best system I've found so far, never see the needle from beginning to end.

ps. gl rachel
 

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I would suggest talking with your doctor about your fear. I have a phobia of needles and with hypothyroidism I have to have blood drawn rather frequently. It's never pleasant but my doctor has worked with me. Maybe if I outline what I do to get throught it, you can get some ideas about what you could do.

* Schedule the lab work as early as possible. Not only do I have less time to freak out before getting blood drawn but I also have more time afterwards to recover.

* I never go alone. My mother (former EMT) accompanies me and communicates my needs for me. She also distracts me while my blood is being drawn which I consider priceless.

* I take Xanax before. Not only does this calm me down -alot, I might add- but it also inhibits my ability to run or fight. I have been known to act violently when approached with a needle. Eheh.

* I also use a lidocaine/prilocaine cream to numb the area. Between this, covering my eyes, being distracted by my mother, and the lab tech NOT telling me what's going on, I usually make it through the appointment.

* As someone previously stated, you should lay down. It lowers the chances of me fainting or injuring myself should I actually faint.

I hope this could help you somewhat. ^_^
 

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Blood draws are virtually impossible for me to do. The needles they want to use look like the size of a damn pipeline to me. finger pricks are OK as the lancet they use if so tiny and sharp that I can't even feel it and a paper cut hurts vastly more.

The last time I gave a blood sample (8 years ago) I had to lay down to avoid the risk of falling to the ground when I passed out and by the time the needle was removed I was about a second away from totally passing out. My vision was going black and I was dripping with sweat as if it was 110 degrees in the room, even though it was really only a normal 72. The nurses were afraid to let me sit up as they feared that I'd fall to the floor if I did that. The doc handed me a huge wad of paper towels to mop my brow that was soaked with sweat. I put on a stunning display.

If I need surgery for something, well, that scare the hell out of me and I have some idea of what I would do in such a situation. I think I'd allow myself to die than go thought any pain of surgery. That may sound like a stupid choice to many, but then few can understand my crazy fears.
 

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* I also use a lidocaine/prilocaine cream to numb the area.
Hey, that's a good idea. Maybe you could do that, hold ice over it for a few minutes, AND take an aspirin or something before they give you the shot, so you won't feel it as much.
 

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If you really must, take an anxiolytic (explain your needle phobia to your doctor and I'm sure they'll be willing to prescribe you a short course of tablets) - Xanax or something similar - to calm yourself down before the blood test. I really do think you ought to get it checked out, as random skin growths are never good news.
What about those of us who already take 10 mg of Xanax daily?

What do we get to put us in la la land so we don't care what you stick in our arm? I'd really like to try some fast-acting barbs.
 
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