But She’s the expert. (It ain’t my first Rodeo, sweetheart)

So I go (again) to give a directed donation of a pint of blood for a young man my niece goes to school with who is a cancer patient.

Gotta drive to the Hospital where he is being treated , which is 50 miles away.

No big deal.

I get there, along with my brother and dad (giving blood has always been a family thing….we have competitions as to who can give the fastest (slowest buys lunch) and such folderol, but hey, it makes the donation fun….)

Anyway, we get there, fill out the requisite forms, give them to the phlebotomists, they do the requisite finger stick and then it is time.

Now, the phlebotomist I had today was a know it all. SHE was the expert…I suggested one vein in my arm, but she knew better. Ok, hey, just stick me.

Now, I’ve given just under 10 gallons at blood drives over the years….. I generally know by now what works and what doesn’t….I mean, really I know which veins flow well (and which ones don’t) and how my blood reacts when entering the needles and such.

As I said to the lady who reviewed my paperwork…”This ain’t my first Rodeo”

But I know nothing when it comes to giving blood. Not a bit. I’m not a trained phlebotomist.

Nope. really, since I am untrained, I know nothing.

Ask the woman who attempted to draw the pint of blood. She is the expert.

So, she sticks me and the flow is poor. Moves the needle, and no improvement. no surprise there, the vein, while easily visible, is only slightly larger than the needle.

Goes to the OTHER ARM, where, since I had just given a blood sample the previous week there, couldn’t use the big vein in the crook of my elbow (why she wouldn’t use that BIG vein in my left arm to begin with I don’t know). so she chose the same small vein higher up on the right arm. Which, if you cut it in half with a dull knife, wouldn’t bleed much or for long little tiny vein . …. But she knows best…..

Was flowing freely for about 3 minutes and was about half done…bag half full. say 250 ml’s maybe a bit more (full bag is a half liter) She decides to re-position the needle. I suggested that there was no hurry as I would have to wait for my dad and brother anyway and that moving the needle might well make the flow be reduced, not increased, as THAT vein was pretty small and the current flow was about max….besides, I clot fairly easily and quickly, and if she stopped the flow my blood would clot almost instantly in the needle. I know this, since it has happened before. (It ain’t my first Rodeo) You can stab me with a fork and I stop bleeding almost as soon as you withdraw the eating utensil from my skin. I clot like Wolverine.

She’s the “expert”…a “trained phelbotomist”. Knows better. so she moved the needle, flow stopped and my blood clogged the tubes.

Half a bag full. No more. Full.Stop…. We.Are.Done.

Can’t try again. Period. Policy, you know….

Policy is that all that blood, 250+ cc’s of blood gets thrown out. . And 2 hours of my time….wasted.

The kid doesn’t get that sorely needed 500ml’s of blood, and I can’t try again for at least 60 days.

Jesus, I hate experts.

Especially “trained” experts.

2 thoughts on “But She’s the expert. (It ain’t my first Rodeo, sweetheart)

  1. Don't feel too bad. The kid wouldn't have received your blood anyway. It would have gone into the general pool. Did I mention that directed donations are a bad policy to have?

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