Tasting blood....Can this be true?

  1. I have been telling people that I actually experience this but no one believes me. Can someone please shed some light on this. I work in a blood lab and when I open alot of Tiger top serum tubes to pour/aliquot off, though I'm wearing my face shield, I'm getting a blood-like taste in my mouth that I believe is coming from all of the serum that I'm pouring off. I swear I can taste the blood only subtle though. What chemistry could be causing this phenomenon?
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    About PopeJane3rd

    Joined: Oct '08; Posts: 168; Likes: 64

    17 Comments

  3. by   getoverit
    Who knows?? just be glad you're not emptying bedpans....that would taste worse.
  4. by   rholman
    Quote from getoverit
    Who knows?? just be glad you're not emptying bedpans....that would taste worse.
    Too Funny...
  5. by   itsbuzzy
    LOL :spin:
  6. by   Be_Moore
    The sense of smell and the sense of taste are very well connected. Likely you are smelling some of the plasma during transfer, and by proxy tasting it.
  7. by   animal1993
    Quote from Be_Moore
    The sense of smell and the sense of taste are very well connected. Likely you are smelling some of the plasma during transfer, and by proxy tasting it.


    I agree. I would also like to add that, like me, you probably have a highly developed sense of smell, which allows you to smell things completely differently (and more strongly) than other people. I know exactly what you're experiencing, as it happens to me quite frequently. (The post about the bedpan brought back some pretty unpleasant memories!)
  8. by   JakeyWakey
    I've been a lab assistant in a hospital lab for the last 2 years. I pour off serum, plasma and urine all day and I have to say, I've NEVER experienced this. I've never particularly felt like serum or plasma has a smell. Urine on the other hand... WOW! Some people have some smelly pee!! Maybe you just have a very acute sense of smell to the point where your brain THINKS you are tasting it also.

    *shrug*
  9. by   2BSure
    Quote from Be_Moore
    The sense of smell and the sense of taste are very well connected. Likely you are smelling some of the plasma during transfer, and by proxy tasting it.
    Exactly right.
  10. by   athena55
    Quote from getoverit
    Who knows?? just be glad you're not emptying bedpans....that would taste worse.
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAhahahhahahahaahahah You made my day!
  11. by   Spritenurse1210
    Quote from getoverit
    Who knows?? just be glad you're not emptying bedpans....that would taste worse.
    Wow you took the words right out of my mouth!!!!
  12. by   PopeJane3rd
    Quote from getoverit
    Who knows?? just be glad you're not emptying bedpans....that would taste worse.



    That would never happen with bedpans. First, pouring serum and changing bedpans are two totally different things. Blood and Feces are totally different with different chemical makeups. They are also handled totally different from each other in labs. Pouring serum is much closer to your face than actually changing a bedpan or handling feces. And I pour off tons of blood on my job as much as 4 or 5 hundred tubes a night! I haven't come across too many people who pour serum with outstretched arms like you would with a bedpan. I agree with the other poster that the senses of smell and taste are so connected that this could be possible. This also reminds me of Ionized calciums that we get. We can't open the tubes for fear of compromising the specimens, so there is some chemical reaction going on with the air we breathe (O2) and exposed blood hence my acute sense of smell coupled with the "taste" factor. It is too bad that people are so quick to make fun of and dismiss things that other people experience. It reminds me of 50 yrs ago when male doctors used to think female problems were all in their heads only to find that these women were actually experiencing these things. Just because you haven't experienced this doesn't mean that it is not possible.
    Last edit by PopeJane3rd on May 22, '09
  13. by   I love my cat!
    Quote from PopeJane3rd
    That would never happen with bedpans. First, pouring serum and changing bedpans are two totally different things. Blood and Feces are totally different with different chemical makeups. They are also handled totally different from each other in labs. Pouring serum is much closer to your face than actually changing a bedpan or handling feces. And I pour off tons of blood on my job as much as 4 or 5 hundred tubes a night! I haven't come across too many people who pour serum with outstretched arms like you would with a bedpan.

    Great response.

    I was wondering how cozy some people were getting w/ those bedpans. LOL!

    The only thing I could think of was this: The iron atoms in blood do give fresh blood a smell and can even give off a kind of metallic odor. Like others stated, smell and taste are very closely connected and therefor smelling the blood gives the sensation that you are 'tasting' blood?

    I really don't know.
  14. by   netglow
    OP, I have to say I as well was smelling/tasting blood after taking care of a massive GI bleed pt. Even in the car I was tasting and smelling it. Had to use my favorite scented lotion (a lot) to xchange scents. Not a drop of blood on me. IDK, maybe its Shakespearean?

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