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Blood glucose monitoring

In medicine, some blood tests are conducted on capillary blood obtained by fingerstick (or fingerprick) (or, for neonates, by an analogous heelprick). The site, free of surface arterial flow, where the blood is to be collected is sterilized with a topical germicide, and the skin pierced with a sterile lancet.[1] After a droplet has formed, capillary blood is captured in a capillary tube (usually relying on surface tension). Blood cells drawn from fingersticks have a tendency to undergo hemolysis, especially if the finger is "milked" to obtain more blood.[2]


Tests commonly conducted on the capillary blood collected are:

Fingersticks are routine for hardy[citation needed] adults, but are generally performed on children and the elderly only if a small amount of blood suffices for needed tests. Neonates are given heelpricks instead, as this is less likely to cause permanent damage.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Centers for Disease Control, Capillary blood sampling protocol (PDF)
  2. ^ Carreyrou, John (21 May 2018). "A New Look Inside Theranos' Dysfunctional Corporate Culture". Wired. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
  3. ^ Ansell, J.; Holden, A.; Knapic, N. (November 1989). "Patient Self-Management of Oral Anticoagulation Guided by Capillary (Fingerstick) Whole Blood Prothrombin Time". Arch Intern Med. 149 (11): 2509–11. doi:10.1001/archinte.1989.00390110085018. PMID 2818110.

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