my veins are not too bad now as I have a central line for my chemo treatment. However I did develop Lymphoedema in my "good arm" recently so as it needs to be preserved as best as can be I asked to be cannulated by the RMO at the hospital the last time I had a scan. We have a mobile scanner at our local hospital and I always find that the team on board make a pigs ear of cannulation. It's within your rights to ask for someone specialised to do it, and I'd recommend it. Scans are stressful enough without the added hunting vein issues.
Yes, Truffleshuff, me too. i only have one good arm and have been praying it will see me through this bout of treatment. One thing I have tried when having scans though, is using a heat pad, the kind you can buy in Boots to stick on your back...I tend to wrap it round a thin t shirt sleeve as it sticks to the skin, but the ct /mri people seem to find it helps.
i also drink copious water aiming for over a litre maybe two and try not to go for a pee, till after im cannulated...one of the nurses recommended that and it seems to work for me...something to do with ? Increased venous pressur maybe.
i am the worlds very worst patient when facing cannulation. But where im treated, they have a rule that each staff member has to hand the patient on after two attempts.. Which makes sense....as the next person usually gets it in first time. i also opt for sinks of hot water for my arm......I always assumed legs are more painful??
I know I am replying to an old post, I hve the sae trouble very hit and miss , but the experts always seem to hit it first time ?
My last one after 7 atempts was carried out with baby needle and a butterfly, so now I always tell who ever is attepting to use this method , and so far so good xx
Hi all, thanks so much for all your replies it's very much appreciated. I've been living with secondary breast cancer for 5 years and during that time the veins in my good side have been badly abused, the years of herceptin by iv (thankfully now I have it via subcutaneous in the leg ) the chemo and endless blood tests as well as ct scans every 3 months it's no surprise my veins don't want to play ball! Everything has been tried including warm water, it's on my notes that I have bad veins and I always tell them where they could try to get a vein but no one ever listens to me. I'm not sure what the answer is but I'm not having a port fitted just for the ct scans I still don't understand why they wouldn't use my foot they have in the past! It's something I will discuss at my next oncology appointment. Thanks again for all your help and advise. Xxxxxxxx
Hi Sarahlouise - do you warm up your hand to bring up your veins before they try to insert the cannula? My former oncology unit always made me put my hands in a sink of water that was very hot. I've had a couple of experiences of about 7 attempts (without the hot water) and it's only been when I've asked and they've brought me a bowl of hot water, or I put my foot in the sink, that they then managed to get a vein. Or, as others have said, perhaps ask for someone more expert in cannulation.
Best of luck and good luck with the scan results.
Oh how I can empathise with you........I usually end up feeling like a pin cushion and black and blue. However, my nurse daughter once advised me to have it put on my notes in bold that I have challenging veins which require an EXPERT to deal with as not everyone trained in bloods is as good as each other and some are only 'allowed' to use certain areas of our bodies. I have had the inside of my wrist used on occasion and actually it is relatively ok in terms of what the option of hunt the vein can be. I've also opted for my foot when needing something longer term. What I can't bear is the adventurous type who will not be beaten by my veins and keeps going until Im in tears. Supposedly the best practitioners are the anaesthetists as it is what they do all the time and can do any part of your body - within reason I guess. My own way of coping in the moment is to look away and use controlled breathing, counting in and out and I dont care how nuts I look. I was told by my oncologist that anyone needing long term vein access is advised to have a port to avoid this mess. Here's hoping you don't need to go through the stress of a repeat performance and that all is well.
I have awful veins, but they do use the one inside my wrist. While it is painful, i perfer it to them trying in lots of different places and not getting in. Hope this helps. Also hope the scan can show what they need and you don't have to have another one. Hugs
Hi all, yesterday was not a good day, I had my usual 3 monthly ct scan (now extended to 6 months). I live in dread not of the scan but of the vein hunt that precedes it. In the past they have had to use my foot, this time they made 3 attempts all failed miserably and it's left me black and blue add to which they ended up scanning me without any contrast dye so the image won't be as good or clear for the Dr's to look at. They actually wanted to put the needle in on the inside of my wrist! I've never had that before and I decided enough was enough I didn't let him stick the needle in there (apparently excruciatingly painful) It means when I go back in Feb for my results (another day of fear) they will probably ask I have the scan repeated and so it starts all over again. I am no longer on chemo but have subcutaneous herceptin so no need for a vein, other than the occasional blood test which the pblebotonist always manages! The ct scan is the only thing that requires a decent vein! Does anyone else suffer with the same problem? and if so how do you get around this? As I am on herceptin for life and am currently living with secondary breast cancer that is presently stable. Thanks in advance for advise. Xxx