Similar to metal cutting, frictional forces occur during medical tissue cutting procedures. In needle insertion high friction causes tissue deflection which hinders the needle positioning accuracy inside the tissue. Poor needle positioning accuracy can be detrimental to the efficacy of the medical procedure. This work investigates how needle surface roughness, the application of TiN coating, and insertion speed affect the frictional force between a needle and tissue. Experiments with four 11 gauge needles of varying surface roughness and one TiN coated needle were carried out to investigate only the frictional forces at the needle tissue interface. It was found that increasing speed increases frictional force, texturing a needle can lower the frictional force, and applying a TiN coating reduced the needles friction by 38%.