Needle anxiety


Royle, J. and Wright, L. (2008) Needle anxiety in the clinic: a needs assessment. British Journal of Nursing. 17(20), p.1274-1279.


Background: A needs assessment for needle anxiety was carried out across people with either spinal cord injury (SCI) or spina bifida (SB). Aims: to identify the numbers of people reporting anxiety when having blood taken and being given injections; to explore individual beliefs; and to identify appropriate action. Method: A self-report questionnaire was developed for clinical use, piloted and administered across a 6-month period. Two-hundred and thirty-one questionnaires were returned (188 SCI group and 43 SB group). Data were analysed using SPSS. Results: There was a significant report of anxiety for both areas in both groups: 10–12% for SCI and 16–19% for SB. Eleven per cent of the SCI group and 19% of the SB group believed it was a problem for them; however, only 4% of each group identified they would want help. Conclusion: There is a clinical responsibility to address the level of need identified by this project. Six proposals are made to highlight awareness of this issue and provide guidance on strategies and interventions for patients and staff.

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