Neonatal sampling essentials

Heel sampling puncture depth

Selecting a safety puncture device with a suitable puncture depth

  • For the average 3kg/6.6lb baby, the heel puncture, at the recommended sites, must not penetrate deeper than 2.0mm to avoid puncturing the bone1
  • For the safety of an infant of below average weight, use a safety puncture device designed with a puncture depth suitable for heel puncture of that infant
  • Puncture and motion blade devices are available for heel sampling. Motion blade devices are designed to deliver maximum comfort2 and optimal blood flow
For the average 3kg/6.6lb baby, the heel puncture, at the recommended sites, must not penetrate deeper than 2.0mm to avoid puncturing the bone.

Important

Maximum puncture depth 2.0mm3,4

These materials have been produced in consultation with key opinion leaders and follow global guidelines, but the user should use his or her professional judgement when using any technique or method described in these materials and should take into account all applicable national, regional and institutional guidelines and regulations.

1. WHO guidelines on drawing blood: best practices in phlebotomy. World Health Organisation; 2010. 2. Shah V. et al. Evaluation of a New Lancet Device (BD Quikheel) on Pain Response and Success of Procedure in Term Neonates. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med 2003; 157: 1075-1078 3. Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) document GP42-A6 (former H04-A6): Procedures and Devices for the Collection of Diagnostic Capillary Blood Specimens; Approved Standard – Sixth Edition. Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute; Wayne, Pennsylvania, USA: 2008. 4. Guidelines for Newborn Blood Spot Sampling. London: Public Health England; 2016. First edition. * Weighing less than 10kg Medial and lateral heel.