1. Psaila, Justin MD
  2. Parsons, Thomas F. RN, CCRP
  3. Hahn, Susan A. CRC II, CCCRP
  4. Fichera, Leah RN


Blood collection via venipuncture is the most common invasive procedure for inpatients, who experience an average of 1.6 to 2.2 blood collection episodes per day, for a total of approximately 450 million in US hospitals annually. In addition to being painful, venipuncture incurs the risk of vessel depletion, infection, and staff needlestick injury. A possible alternative is to use peripheral intravenous catheters (PIVCs), because PIVCs are placed in the majority of patients admitted to the hospital. Although there are anecdotal accounts of successfully using PIVCs for inpatient blood collection, the utility of this method has not been rigorously studied. The authors conducted a single-center prospective study among inpatients to evaluate blood collection success, defined as sufficient sample volume (4 mL) and no or minimal hemolysis, in PIVCs with a dwell time between 12 and 87 hours. Only 27% (28/105) of aspiration attempts were successful within this time frame. There was no difference in success rate with respect to PIVC dwell time, gauge, or location. These findings highlight the continued need for innovative, alternative solutions to meet the high demand for inpatient blood collection.