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You Suck(tion)!

, , | Healthy | November 28, 2017

(I have a rare disease for which I have to have blood work done every few months. I always get it done at the local health department because I don’t have insurance and labs are too expensive elsewhere. They used to have a phlebotomist on staff who was quite good at her job, but she retired around a year before this incident. After she retired, for a while, my tests were done by whichever nurse happened to be available. On this day, one of the nurses who has drawn my blood a few times before is training a different nurse on lab procedures, so the trainee nurse is actually the one doing the draw. I’m often a problematic draw because my veins are small, and sometimes my blood doesn’t come out. This happens after several other mishaps, including the trainee nurse not noticing all of the tests I need to have done, having to remind both of them that one of my samples has to be frozen, and the trainee nurse failing to draw from my left arm and having to try my right arm instead. As the trainee nurse is drawing my blood, she’s pulling up on the needle in a way that makes it hurt like h***, but I’m kind of used to it, so I’m just responding to the talkative trainer nurse and not looking at my arm. Finally the trainee nurse finishes filling the last vial and removes the needle. Something feels a little odd, so I look down to see blood POURING from my arm. I’ve been getting labs done regularly for about 13 years at this point, and I’ve never seen anything like that, so I’m a bit alarmed.)

Me: “What the h***?!

Trainee Nurse: “…”

Trainer Nurse: “Oh! *to trainee nurse* “Looks like you broke the suction…” *to me* “Uh, she broke the suction… But that’s okay! It’s perfectly fine, just looks bad. Don’t worry!”

Me: “Uh…”

Trainee Nurse: “It happens sometimes.”

Me: “That has NEVER happened to me before. But okay, sure.”

(That’s not something that just “happens sometimes”; that’s something you DO.)

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