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In medicine, some blood tests are conducted on venous blood obtained by fingerstick or fingerprick. After a droplet has formed, venous blood is sucked up in a capillary tube, usually relying on surface tension, but sometimes using indirect suction.

Tests commonly conducted on capillary blood are:

Fingersticks are sometimes performed on children and the elderly, when only a small amount of blood (less than 500 μg) is needed for a test. Neonates (newborn babies) are given heelpricks instead, as this is less likely to cause permanent damage.


  1. ^ 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 (American Medical Association) 149 (11): 2509–2511. doi:10.1001/archinte.1989.00390110085018. 

External links[edit]

  • Heelpricks, section "Blood collection on babies"