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Question
Posted by: em | 2005/12/01

HELP, I avoid medical treatment due to my needle phobia

I'm worried about my health...I'm only 27years old and I'm experiencing severe to moderate night sweats, fatigue,and cold/clammy sweaty hands than then turn to extremely warm/hot sweaty hands. I've seen doctors but they all tell me I'm going to need a complete blood work up...I'm terrified, just writing about this makes my hands and fingers ache, my heart beats faster, my stomach is churning. I can't stand needles and even worse, that absolute worse is blood tests. How can I find a doctor that's sensitive to my phobia and will work with me and help me and not be annoyed and dismiss what is a truly terrifying situation for me?
Please help.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberDoc

Dear Em,
Unfortunately the only way to get blood out is to draw it! BUT you do get a cream called EMLA that you can put on your arm to anaesthetize the skin. The doctor can then use a "butterfly needle" which means that he/she will only have to put in one needle and will be able to draw all the blood from that one place without you really feeling any pain. I would look for a lady doctor in your area, they are normally more sympathetic! You could even ask her to give you something to calm you down while waiting for the EMLA to work (like ATERAX.) You do need to have your symptoms looked at, and I hope that my suggestions will make it easier for you. Be assertive and ask the doctor straight if he/she will be willing to assist you to cope with your fear and don't be intimidated. You pay for the service.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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