What Is Phlebotomy
What is phlebotomy? Phlebotomy is the process of removing blood from the body. Most of us have had blood drawn for medical purposes at one time or another. The medical process of taking this blood is called phlebotomy. This process is also known as venipuncture.
Phlebotomy can be used for diagnostic purposes, obtaining patients' blood specimins, as well as transporting and analyzing those specimins, to diagnose medical problems. Phlebotomy can also be used for medical treatment. For example, patients who have too much iron in their blood or who have too many red blood cells are treated using phlebotomy. The field of phlebotomy has undergone great expansion in the past decade, largely due to increased awareness of the risk posed by infectious diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.
During the process of phlebotomy, the phlebotomist draws blood from a patient's vein, usually from a vein in the elbow or back of the hand. First, the vein site is cleaned with antibacterial ointment. Next, an elastic band is wrapped around the arm so that the vein fills with blood. A hollow needle attached to a small vial is inserted into the vein to collect about 500 milliliters of blood.
Phlebotomy is usually performed in a medical clinic. It is a safe procedure when done by a health professional. You should feel minimal pain and may feel slightly dizzy after the procedure. Follow your doctor's instructions for before, during and after the procedure to make sure that your phlebotomy procedure goes smoothly.