Friday, February 11, 2011

no more needle-phobia?

it seems that the doctors have got it wrong all along!

everytime i take blood samples or give injections, i invariably tell patients to look away & think of something pleasant. a recent study (read here and here) has shown that patients actually feel LESS pain if they look at their own hand or arm, but NOT at the needle.

this just goes to show that although medical science has advanced by leaps & bounds, we still do not have a complete knowledge of pain or its treatment.

so, what will you do when you are next faced with this situation? still look away?

i think i would!


Yvonne Foong said...

I look at the neddle about 70% of the time. The other times I just look straight ahead. I tell myself that I've been through far greater pain. That worked well. Nothing hurts more than having a row of staples down your back and a fresh and deep incision down your back that you have to lay on while morphine tries to numb the pain without success. This trick has worked fine for me.

iml said...

By not looking, I won't intensified the pain. It works for me.

doc said...


there's just something about a needle that intimidates & terrorises people all over, but a scalpel is in a different league by itself. it not only punctures, it cuts & maims, & yet it also heals.

a strange paradox.

doc said...


i wonder if you dare to try looking at your hand (NOT the needle) the next time?

Unicorn Girl said...

be a gutso lady and just pretend that the injection never hurt even a teeny weeny bit in the first place :) .

doc said...


do you mean gutso or gung-ho?

me said...

pretty hard to look at the hand and not at the needle, don't you think? gets even worse if the doctor's hand is shaking or his techniques are off. would be enough to make u piss in your pants. :-p the pain is all in the mind, projected by the fear and the anticipation. the longer u wait, the worse it gets. i prefer your technique of looking away. think about what else is on your agenda, and ta dah, u're ready to go.

doc said...


the technique is also applicable to other body parts, so you could actually look at the other hand, which may also be trembling as much as the doctor's!!

yeah, for most of us who are not so needlephobic, we just get by without so much as bat an eyelid but you could impress your fearful friend/relative when you tell them about this technique.

Adino said...

Normally I will look, because if I don't look I am waiting in suspense for the needle to go in. After it goes in, then I will look away especially if they're drawing blood.

doc said...


i guess each one will handle this fear in their own way, but no doubt, will trying to look macho at the same time!!