Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) Expert Forum
No Veins for blood draw
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Questions in the Peripheral Arterial Disease forum are answered by Dr. Lee Kirksey, associate professor at The University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Topics covered include abdominal aortic aneurysm , amputation, arteriovenous fistula, atherectomy, carotid artery surgery , cholesterol , claudication, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) , endovascular aortic stent graft (EVAR), stent placement , stroke prevention, varicose veins , and venous insufficiency .

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No Veins for blood draw

My 80 year old mother had an unexpected illness which required three weeks hospitalization.  During this time, it was almost impossible to get a blood draw.  It was TORTURE for her every morning.

A few months later, she had a blood test, the lab worker had a hard time finding a vein.  Ever since then her arm still hurts on occasion. They x-rayed for a needle and nothing was found.

She is due to have yet another surgery with a long-term stay.  We warned the doctor about the veins and suggested a pick-line but he seem to care less (much more focused on the cutting).  The doctors don't seem to realize how painful it was poking around for a vein.

So I have two questions.  First, why do you think her arm still hurts?  Second, is there any way to avoid having problems drawing blood in the next surgery?
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Hello
Im so sorry to hear about your mothers prolonged illness and difficulty. Poor peripheral venous access is not an uncommon problem as people age and it can be quite the dilemma especially when she describe her need for a prolonged stay. (by the way, what type of procedure does the insurance business allow for a prolonged stay these days)

I think your idea about a picc line or some other type of temporary central line is very good. I would enlist the assistance of an advocate physician like her pcp to push for this prior to her surgery. It is necessary to have reliable venous access to perform surgery safely.

Good luck
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