Capillary Blood Draw

This involves taking a small amount of blood from the tip of a finger, ear lobe or heel.

This involves taking a small amount of blood from the tip of a finger, ear lobe or heel.

A capillary blood draw is when a small amount of blood is taken from the tip of a finger, ear lobe or heel.The steps include:

  • Cleaning the skin on the finger tip, heel or ear lobe and pricking it with a sharp instrument (lancet).
  • When a drop of blood appears, it is collected in a special tube.

A capillary blood draw may be done to test for or monitor a variety of medical conditions.

  • A finger stick is often used to check the blood sugar of someone with diabetes.
  • A heel or finger stick is a common way to test the blood of a newborn or infant.

Prior to having your blood drawn, make sure you follow all the instructions given to you by your healthcare provider.

  • Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take.
  • Some tests require you to stop eating for a certain number of hours or avoid certain medications before the test.

What should I ask my healthcare provider before having this test?

  • What is my diagnosis or reason for the test? Will the test results change my treatment plan? If not, do I need the test?
  • Do I need to fast before the test and, if so, for how long?
  • Is there any special preparation for the test? (If so, get clear instructions on what you need to do.)


Also known as:

Lab Draw
Heel Stick
Finger Stick
Capillary Blood Draw
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