blood draw from heparin lock?

  1. has anyone had any experience drawing blood from a heparin lock? I have a home health patient that is ordered blood draws from a heplock. What size catheter? And do you use a vacutainer or syringe? Help.
  2. Visit mary y. profile page

    About mary y.

    Joined: Nov '01; Posts: 1
    RN home health


  3. by   janine3&5
    I use the HL to draw labs whenever I can in the ER. When we first put in the IV, I attach the HL to a vacutainer to draw blood. After the HL's been used for meds, fluids, whatever, then I use a syringe for any blood draws ( waste the first 5 ccs)

    However, you aren't always able to draw blood from the existing site- probably about 40% of the time the HL will be patent, but you still can't get any blood from it. I'm not sure why this is?

    In my experience, repeated draws from the HL work best with at least a 20 guage (18 is even better) in a big vein (AC).
  4. by   Chuckie
    Last edit by Chuckie on Jan 17, '03
  5. by   kewlnurse
    I use ht's all the time 50/50 with vacutainers, it the ht doesn't draw, i put another one in, hospital policy is that they must be 20 ga or larger, don't think anything smaller would work anyway