Definition of Phlebotomy

PhlebotomyThe clinical term for puncturing a vein with a sterile needle to withdraw blood.

Phlebotomy may be diagnostic, such as when drawing blood for diagnostic blood tests, or therapeutic, such as a treatment for hemochromatosis.

Phlebotomy may be mildly uncomfortable, as the needle may sting as it penetrates the skin and the vein. The blood withdrawal itself is painless.

The risks of phlebotomy are minor for most people and include mild bleeding, bruising, and discomfort at the puncture site.

See also BLOOD DONATION.

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