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Author Topic: Why is SO much blood needed.  (Read 4619 times)

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Offline midnightchatter

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Why is SO much blood needed.
« on: July 28, 2008, 07:27:34 AM »
Hello All,

I went for my quarterly blood work today and while sitting there waiting i started to wonder.

Why do i have to give SO much blood.

Like 12 lots, also this time i got asked to produce a urine sample.

why is it that i have to give them a urine sample like once a year??

I know it may sound strange but i never actually thought about it before.

Can anyone shed a light on this for me?

Many thanks x

Offline Matty the Damned

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2008, 07:31:23 AM »
I might be way off here, but did you ask the people at the clinic why you have to provide these samples? It strikes me that they might have a better idea than we would.

Welcome, by the way.

MtD :)

Offline midnightchatter

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2008, 07:34:36 AM »
It would have been nice to ask them but the place was rammed!!!

I had to wait like an hour to get my bloods done and the nurse in charge did nothing but tut as she tried three times to get a vein!!!!!

Offline Matty the Damned

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2008, 07:42:38 AM »
Well honey,

I'm gonna hazard a few guesses here. Clearly they were taking blood for viral load, CD4 and CD8 counts. General biochemistry (LFT, KFT and so on) too.

Really the responsibility for finding out what tests your clinic is ordering is up to you. No matter how "rammed" the place might be, you can always ask the sister taking bood what tests have been ordered by your doctor. Even better ask the doctor when you see him or her.

This is your health, and your virus. You have to do some of the leg work yourself.

Be well, :)

MtD

Offline midnightchatter

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2008, 08:05:23 AM »
I though this site was for help and support!!!! not to be shouted at.

I'll try and not ask too much on here from now on.








Offline Ann

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2008, 08:12:16 AM »
Hi Mid,

I really don't think you were being shouted at - it's just the fact of the matter that where your health is concerned, you need to ask questions of your health care providers and find out why they're doing what they're doing. We don't have crystal balls nor were we there in the room when your blood was being taken. No matter how busy the clinic was, you had the opportunity to ask why so much blood was being taken WHILE it was being taken.

Have you ever had a look through the Lessons section of this website? There's one that deals specifically with blood tests. http://www.aidsmeds.com/articles/BloodTest_5030.shtml That might help shed a little light on your blood draw.

Take care,
Ann
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

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Offline midnightchatter

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2008, 08:53:46 AM »
Thanks Ann,

That's the info i was looking for.






Offline Robert

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2008, 10:31:39 AM »
I usually give like 5-6 tubes of blood but some are bigger than others.  They include complete blood count, VL, HIV, PSA, etc.

I have no idea what the urine sample would be for.  Haven't had to give one of those in years.  Maybe your Dr saw something in the last tests that he wants to check for.  Make sure you ask him about that when you see him in a few weeks to discuss the results from these tests.

robt
..........

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2008, 11:46:02 AM »
I used to have a urine sample done every other month by my first HIV specialist, but that was in the early 90's dark ages -- I guess they were looking for metabolic/kidney weirdness.  I think I've only had it requested of me once in the past 4 years though.

It would also pick up any urinary tract infections, and I've actually had one of those which I guess is odd for a guy, but then I'm a filthy queen.  Actually I also had thrush at the time too... and wasting so I guess I was just plain not very healthy.  That was 6 years ago.

 I actually would feel better if they checked it yearly I suppose, at least just as far as any infection might go.

As far as this overall topic goes, franky the more liquids extracted from my body for testing the better.  I appreciate prudent monitoring!  Anyway, I never look at how many vials there are.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline J.R.E.

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2008, 11:50:42 AM »

I also get about 5 or 6 tubes drawn. On this last test, ( week ago) they got 8. I also give a urine sample once a year, or more frequent should the doctor request it.

Ray

EDITED ; meant to place this in also :

http://www.aidsmeds.com/articles/CSTest_4730.shtml
« Last Edit: July 28, 2008, 12:04:22 PM by J.R.E. »
Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 12.5mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
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 In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started my first  HAART regimen  on October 24th,03.

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Offline newt

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2008, 12:07:25 PM »
Urine is to check protein and/or glucose in your pee

The tubes:

Full blood count
CD4 count
Viral load
Liver enzymes
Syphilis antibody
Hepatitis C antibody
Hepatitis B antibody
Blood fats (lipids, cholesterol)
Albumin
Urea and electrolytes
Blood glucose
Bone metabolism (deffo if on tenofovir, but often done ayway)

These are a standard dozen in the most complete battery of annual blood monitoring tests for people on or off combo

1 or more could be substitued/extra tubes added for a resistance test if soon to start treatment

If not your doc ordered something else, and should tell you why, or the nurse took blood to look for something else, and should tell you why.

Busy, busy nurses, so what... Every time they take blood they should tell you what the vial is for. This is called good nursing practice.

- matt

"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline PeteNYNJ

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2008, 04:55:26 PM »
I give a urine sample once a year at my physical.  I believe they can also tell if you have any bacterial infections or STDs such as gonorrhea and chlamydia.  I read recently that the urine test is better for detecting and less invasive then the old swap in your pecker. 

I usually just read what they are drawing for off the form my nurse fills out before gathering the vials.  I tend to get the same guy (which is a blessing since my veins are deep and it can usually be a search and destroy mission to hit one).  Leave it to an ex junkie to be able to find my vein :)

Pete

Offline bocker3

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2008, 05:48:14 PM »
The fact of the matter is that once you've been stuck and the blood is flowing, it doesn't matter much if they take 1 tube or 12 tubes (assuming they have a steady hand and get all these tubes with that one stick).  12 tubes may seem like a lot of blood, but it really isn't much at all for an adult.
Different tubes are needed for different tests because sometimes the blood needs to coagulate so that they can test the serum, some tests require plasma or whole blood, so the blood can't coagulate.  If you need whole blood or plasma, the test being ordered might require a specific anticoagulate, like EDTA or sodium citrate.  I could get more technical, but I think you get the picture. 
On a less technical note, they sometimes need multiple tubes because different tests are performed at different facilities. 
And, finally, any smart clinic will take a bit more than they need, so that they are less likely to have to call you back for more if one tube gets dropped, or they have to do repeat tests, etc.

So, hopefully I've helped you understand why they need so much blood, although, my hunch is that you are more concerned about why so many tests.  I'll have to agree with the others here and say that your doctor is the best source for that answer.

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2013 691/31% <20

Offline minismom

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #13 on: July 28, 2008, 06:43:52 PM »
I remember when Mini was an infant (and up until she was about 5).  Everytime we brought in her lab sheets, they'd have to have a conference with the lab to find out what the MINIMUM amount of blood they could take and still do all the tests.  She was so little, that they couldn't take as much blood as was required by all the tests being run.  And, we had to do this every 2wks for over a year.

Now, they take 6-8 vials because she has her labs drawn for 2 different docs at the same time.  She could tell you the difference between a purple top and a white top - but I can't.

Mum (who thinks everyone should be born with a port)
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"Whichever way you throw me, i will stand"
"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today...it's already tomorrow in Australia"  Charles Schultz

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2008, 07:31:56 PM »
On average I give around 18 vials, ranging from 5 ml. - 10 ml. per vial + a urine sample. Sometimes I luck out and only give 11 vials + the urine sample.

Offline aliveinla

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #15 on: July 28, 2008, 09:55:23 PM »
Good question. I was wondering about the same thing. I was drawn 11 tubes last week and the nurse told me it was the 2nd largest he has ever done (the most was 16 tubes) and I was asked to pee again in a bottle. I think my ID doctor still thinks I am a slut so he ordered the full spectrum of STD tests again (the 3rd time after I was diagnosed in January). I am scheduled to see him the day after tomorrow to get my result. I need to talk to him seriously why I have to do this STD test every 2 months, maybe I should tell him I had no sex at all.  ;)
4/24/07: Last tested Neg
1/22/08: First tested Poz
1/30/08: CD4 393; 28%; VL: 44k
3/18/08: CD4 218; 26%; VL: 222K
4/24/08: CD4 402; 26%; VL: lab forgot
7/22/08: CD4 405; 25%; VL: 6,780
10/15/08: CD4 340, 26%; VL: N/A
2/4/09: CD4 394, 26%; VL: N/A
Jun 09: CD4 300, 25%; VL: 4000
Oct 09: CD4 324, 23%, VL: 10K
11/22/09: started Atripla
11/20/11: CD4 405; VL: UD

Offline Oceanbeach

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2008, 01:27:18 PM »
I would suppose the Lab Technician would need the 12 lots to complete a number of tests.  For me, they take 4 vials quarterly while some of the vials are tested locally, others are frozen and shipped to Labs in another state.  I have seen on the billing a sample of my blood which is drawn in California is actually tested in North Carolina and sometimes Santa Barbara (Southern Calif).   ;D I like to think I provide jobs  ;D

I like to tell the Nurse that I do all the work.  All he does is poke a needle in my arm but I have to get my heart to pump up the blood and make new blood also.  He said, I shouldn't tell the doctor that because he does need a job and he enjoys being a Nurse.

Today, I am going to make Staff Nurse very happy.  I am going to drive into town, go to the HIV clinic and piss in a bottle... Because I owe the clinic a cup of urine and I always pay my debts  ;D  Have the best day
Michael
 

Offline minismom

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2008, 04:20:39 PM »
Everyone here keeps talking about urine tests.  Mini hasn't had one since her CMV test when she was an infant (and the countless they did when she was in the hospital).  Something I'll be sure to talk to her PID about in September.

Mum
www.watoto.com
www.MotherBearProject.org
"Whichever way you throw me, i will stand"
"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today...it's already tomorrow in Australia"  Charles Schultz

Offline CraigMKE

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #18 on: July 31, 2008, 06:05:32 PM »
Remember, the actual amount of blood in the tubes is very little, even at 12 tubes, it was probably only 1/2 pint.

Craig

Offline Winiroo

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2008, 06:11:22 PM »
Heck I'd be pleased the doctors seem to be thorough with their testing.
It could be worse, they could be giving you completely inadequate care.

 ;)


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Offline aliveinla

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2008, 10:03:13 PM »
I saw my ID doc today and got results from my 11 tubes of blood (after several calls by the ID nurse to my PCP nurse, PCP finally faxed the result over). Apparently my PCP and ID doc belong to different hospitals and PCP never forwarded anything voluntarily to my ID doc, so the full spectrum test result PCP ordered was never forwarded to my ID doc. That's why I have to suffer that 11 tube blood draw again. I seriously need to change my PCP. Since everything looks normal, ID doc told me next time will be much less than 11 tubes and no urine will be needed. This solved my mystery.

Oh, it's funny when the ID doc first walked in and noticed my VL number of 6,780, dropped from the previous 44,000 on his chart, he said "it's good but not that good it should be 0"--he thought I was on medication.
4/24/07: Last tested Neg
1/22/08: First tested Poz
1/30/08: CD4 393; 28%; VL: 44k
3/18/08: CD4 218; 26%; VL: 222K
4/24/08: CD4 402; 26%; VL: lab forgot
7/22/08: CD4 405; 25%; VL: 6,780
10/15/08: CD4 340, 26%; VL: N/A
2/4/09: CD4 394, 26%; VL: N/A
Jun 09: CD4 300, 25%; VL: 4000
Oct 09: CD4 324, 23%, VL: 10K
11/22/09: started Atripla
11/20/11: CD4 405; VL: UD

Offline northernguy

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2008, 11:58:12 PM »
I have no idea how much blood they take from me, as I can't look at them doing it.  If I look, I'll pass out.  Never had a urine test in conjunction with HIV though.
Apr 28/06 cd4 600 vl 10,600 cd% 25
Nov 8/09 cd4 510 vl 49,5000 cd% 16
Jan 16/10 cd4 660 vl 54,309 cd% 16
Feb 17/10 Started Atripla
Mar 7/10 cd4 710 vl 1,076 cd% 21
Apr 18/10 cd4 920 vl 268 cd% 28
Jun 19/10 cd4 450 vl 60 cd% 25
Aug 15/10 cd4 680 vl 205 cd% 27
Apr 3/11 cd4 780 vl <40 cd% 30
Jul 17/11 cd4 960 vl <40 cd%33
April 15/12 cd4 1,010 vl <40 cd% 39
April 20/12 Switched to Viramune + Truvada
Aug 2/12 cd4 1040, vl <40, cd% 38
Oct 19 cd4 1,110 vl <40 cd% 41

Offline komnaes

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #22 on: August 01, 2008, 12:55:22 AM »
I just did mind this morning..

Our clinic is in a general hospital so there's this one center for all patients to "give" blood for all sorts of lab tests. The setting is like an assembly line - everyone line up in front of this room, report to the front desk nurses first for ID checking, then they will hand out all the empty tubes needed for different tests to the patients for us to carry them ourselves to one of the available nurses.

I didn't count but it's been like around 10 tubes every times! No kidding. This morning it took me 5 minutes and both arms to fill up all of them. I suppose I should ask what are they for next time...
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline Roie

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #23 on: August 01, 2008, 01:56:25 AM »
I have the best clinic. Giving blood is always by appointment made 3 month before.
My nurse is fantastic. helpful and kind and professional. She is fast and before I even know it, its all over with out my feeling a thing.
And the longest I have ever waited is about 15 min.
Cruise on down the High Way

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MtD

tendai

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #24 on: August 01, 2008, 06:56:48 AM »
guess im lucky. they only take 1 vial for the CD4 in my case. thank God for that coz i'd probably pass out from all the poking the way i hate needles

Offline Winiroo

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #25 on: August 01, 2008, 08:35:45 PM »
I had labs done today. They give you the paperwork to hold on to until the lab tech calls you back. So I of course look through them and see what they where testing me for.
What I first noticed was they where wanting a UA. Which they never ask for with me. Then I noticed it was a bunch of average everyday labs, none specific to HIV.
Come to find out the UA was them checking to see if i have chlamydia and some other STD I cant remember for some reason. And the other crap was just the doctor wanting to keep tabs on something.
They only drew 3 red tops. They said they didn't test for CD4 and viral load because it hasn't been 3 months since they tested last.

My only bitches are they didn't use a butterfly needle on me so my arm bled forever and now its bulbous and ouchy where they poked me. And that the cost of gas and the speeding ticket I got on the way to the hospital doesn't make me happy at all.

I haven't had a ticket in nearly 20 years and I was trying to get around someone, my lane had huge potholes,  but the officer didn't care  about my story so I was bad and got caught and I've been all girly emotional about it all day.  ;D


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Offline md

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #26 on: August 02, 2008, 02:32:23 AM »
My partner got a new doctor back in May so he ended up getting a pretty complete set of labs done - about 12 vials of blood, I think.

Took him down to the clinic and the first attempt at getting blood drawn was hopeless - we ended up with a young girl who just couldn't find a vein - she spent about 5 minutes looking at his right arm, then his left arm and then his right arm again - eventually she had a go at his right arm - two attempts actually - and got absolutely nowhere.

So she goes looking for someone else to help her - we wait another 5 minutes because the guy she is looking for is currently dealing with another patient, but eventually he comes over and she tries to explain what the problem is - he isn't listening to her - just wants to see the lab order and asks her if she is sure she has all the right vials - he isn't happy with something that she says so he proceeds to get a complete set of fresh vials himself.  During all this time he doesn't appear to have even looked at Tony's arm - certainly none of the peering and poking and prodding that went on before - he picks up the needle and even though I was watching closely he put it in so fast that I didn't even see him do it - it was like he held it about an inch from the skin and just flicked it in like a dart -  the next thing I know he is filling the vials and we were out of there about 60 seconds later ...

Offline lcs0901

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #27 on: August 02, 2008, 10:25:17 AM »
There's another reason docs may check your urine, besides looking for bacteria, fungi, blood, protein, or glucose - HIV itself has been implicated in the development of renal (kidney) failure.  Keep asking your doc, as well as the nurses (they see the same patients that the doc does, then read the chart as well) what they're testing for.  You might also want to get a copy of each set of labs for yourself, and keep track of things on your own.  That can help you identify (and remind you to ask about) anything that doesn't seem right to you.

Offline Robert

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #28 on: August 02, 2008, 10:59:54 AM »

Quote
You might also want to get a copy of each set of labs for yourself, and keep track of things on your own.  That can help you identify (and remind you to ask about) anything that doesn't seem right to you.

There is a great Graph My Labs section here at AIDSMEDS.  I've been using it for 4 years now.  Every time (like yesterday) I come back from my quarterly visit, I post my lab results.

It's a great tool.  Easy access.

robert
..........

Offline Winiroo

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #29 on: August 02, 2008, 11:40:52 AM »
I should do that Robert. Considering I cant seem to remember things here lately.  ;D


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Offline sparks

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #30 on: August 02, 2008, 01:06:53 PM »
did they get the urine?? or did they just bill for the ua?
IM a 17 yr survivor my t-cells have always been 900 or above znd my viral load remains undetectable,, ive known i was positive since i was 20

Offline sparks

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #31 on: August 02, 2008, 01:15:41 PM »
DANG newt im impressed you knew what they all were,,,, ive drawn labs in the emergency room for yrs and i couldnt rattle them off i just know i need this many of this color this many of this... i do know about the looking for protien in the urine thing ,,, but i have also seen hospitals and doctors office's bill for stuff not done .....
IM a 17 yr survivor my t-cells have always been 900 or above znd my viral load remains undetectable,, ive known i was positive since i was 20

Offline Winiroo

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #32 on: August 02, 2008, 02:25:29 PM »
did they get the urine?? or did they just bill for the ua?
Not sure who you where asking but I peed in the cup. Now whether they used it or not I have no clue.  ;D


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Offline sparks

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #33 on: August 02, 2008, 02:49:00 PM »
they used it
IM a 17 yr survivor my t-cells have always been 900 or above znd my viral load remains undetectable,, ive known i was positive since i was 20

Offline Peter6836

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #34 on: August 02, 2008, 04:05:48 PM »
Oh hell be a man and just give them the damn blood. They will not take it for anything else. Besides what good is it to us. It is tainted and no one really wants it. Be generous give them the blood they want.
Peter

Offline Winiroo

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #35 on: August 02, 2008, 09:17:56 PM »
LOL I was kidding. I dont think that nice young lady would want to start a Wendy pee collection.  ;D


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Offline minismom

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #36 on: August 03, 2008, 07:03:54 AM »
There was one lab, different from the one we go to now, that called to let us know we had to bring Mini back in to repeat her labs.  When asked why, the guy said simply, "we lost it".  Needless to say, we never went back to that lab.

Mum
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Offline Oceanbeach

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #37 on: August 03, 2008, 03:19:52 PM »
I was getting my labs done every month at first and since I was a client/patient of the Care Clinic at St. Mary's, they had labs and pharmacy onsite.  There must have been a hundred lab techs because in 4 years, I rarely saw the same person twice.  I love the Care Clinic and the Care Program as much as I love Title I EMA's.

I moved away for a free house in the country-

At the new clinic, you had to have your labs done by 3:00 because... they had to be frozen and couriered to another location  (in another county) and then transported to another state (California to North Carolina) to be processed.  I can fully understand why they can lose labs in small communities.   ;D  Have the best day
Michael

Offline sparks

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #38 on: August 16, 2008, 11:17:02 AM »
it seems to me that their changing the protocol for doing lab draws on hiv pts and doing them futher apart has any one else noticed this trend
IM a 17 yr survivor my t-cells have always been 900 or above znd my viral load remains undetectable,, ive known i was positive since i was 20

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Why is SO much blood needed.
« Reply #39 on: August 16, 2008, 09:26:04 PM »
I still get mine every 3 months.

 


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