FINGERSTICK PROCEDURE

Effective Date: 
Sun, 07/01/2012
Reviewed: 
Tue, 01/10/2017
Policy: 

Principle: Skin puncture in this laboratory is used primarily for whole blood glucose testing.

Equipment:

  • Laboratory Coat
  • Latex Gloves
  • 70% isopropyl alcohol pads
  • Dry cotton balls or 2 X 2 gauze pads
  • Carelet sterile safety lancet
Procedure: 

Procedure:

  1. Greet the patient with a friendly, professional manner. Patient cooperation is essential for successful results. The tone of the patient encounter is set within the first 30 seconds of communication.
  2. Ask patient for her/his full name and verify that spelling of name is correct on laboratory request forms.
  3. It is essential to put patient at ease by answering questions, being sensitive to patient's fear level, being gentle with technique, and speaking with unhurried, authoritative, but quiet voice. Let the patient know that this procedure might be a little painful, but of short duration. Never say "this won't hurt a bit."
  4. Have the patient sit in the phlebotomy chair and raise or lower the chair arm accordingly. Have patient hold right or left elbow at side and rest hand on the chair arm, palm up. Ask patient if s/he has had any previous problems having blood drawn. If necessary, patient may lie down if prone to fainting or ill.
  5. If patient is not conscious, clinician must identify the patient. Document clinician's initials on laboratory request forms.
  6. Review laboratory request form for completeness: Full name, last name first if handwritten, telephone number, student ID number, clinician's name or initials, date requested, test(s) requested, arrival time and date. If computer label is used, only clinician's name or initials, test requested, and arrival date and time are needed.
  7. Wash and dry hands thoroughly and put on latex gloves.
  8. Select site on the 2nd or 3rd finger. Avoid using thumbs, index fingers, or fingertips, which are more sensitive to pain.
  9. Cleanse puncture site with alcohol pad, dry with cotton ball or gauze. Presence of alcohol will hemolyze blood sample.
  10. Twist off protective tab on sterile safety lancet and place in disposal. While gently holding patient's hand in place, position safety lancet properly on puncture site. Press the white button to activate the safety lancet. Dispose of unit in appropriate sharps container.
  11. Using dry cotton ball or gauze, wipe away first droop of blood to eliminate contamination of sample with tissue fluid.
  12. Moderate pressure may be applied just below the puncture site to obtain second drop of blood; avoid "squeezing" of the finger. If necessary, gently massage from the hand to near the puncture site to obtain the required blood volume.
  13. Follow fingerstick glucose procedure for testing of blood droplet.
  14. Use clean cotton ball or gauze on puncture site after sampling and ask patient to press on it to stop blood flow. If necessary, a spot bandage may be places on puncture site.