Blood tests are a simple way of getting information about the well-being of the body. Blood tests are carried out to know how the body is reacting or coping with an illness, medication, treatment plan, inflammation, and infection. If your doctor orders you to carry out private blood tests, the result gotten will give the doctor an idea of how best to treat you to prevent further complications.
Where would I have a blood test?
Blood tests can be done at a hospital, by your GP or a nurse. If you have an NHS health check, the blood test will be a quick finger prick test to check your glucose and cholesterol levels. If the values in the result are higher than normal, you may need to go to a hospital for a full blood test.
How will my blood be taken?
Your medical professional will use a tourniquet to tie your upper arm close to where the blood will be collected.
The area where the blood will be taken will be cleaned using a sterile alcohol wipe. Your medical professional will insert a small needle that is attached to a small sample bottle. The blood will flow into the bottle through the needle. When enough blood has been taken, the needle will be removed.
If you have fragile veins or they prove difficult to find, a different kind of needle called a butterfly (a needle with plastic wings on its sides) might be used. The needle will be inserted into a small vein on the back of your hand.
When the needle is removed, your medical professional (doctor or nurse) will place a piece of gauze over the punctured area. You will need to hold the gauze in place for a few minutes for the bleeding to cease.
What happens after a blood test?
Most blood bottles contain a small amount of an anticoagulant which helps to stop the blood from clotting in the tube. The blood will be labeled with your name, date of birth, and hospital number before it will be sent to the lab for analysis.
Blood bottles have caps of different colors. The one that will be used for you will depend on the type of test you are carrying out.
What will my blood be tested for?
Blood tests can be used for various purposes, such as checking cholesterol and glucose levels. When your doctor knows your glucose and cholesterol levels, it helps to monitor diabetes, heart, or circulatory diseases.
Blood tests are very useful when checking for different chemicals and proteins, which are an indication of how vital organs such as the liver and kidney are working.
A blood test for troponin can help in the diagnosis of a heart attack, and, running a test for brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) can be very useful in diagnosing heart failure.
A blood test can also be used to check your INR level (a measure of how quickly your blood will clot) when you take warfarin.
Is there anything to be done in preparation for a blood test?
For some tests, you may need to fast before your blood is collected. Your doctor will let you know if your test requires you to fast. Ensure you drink water before your test except your doctor tells you not to because if you are not hydrated, it will be difficult to find your vein.
What is the duration before I can get my blood test result?
This partly depends on the type and urgency of the test. Most blood tests that are done at a GP surgery are routine meaning that it is not urgent so, it may take a few days for your results to be available. If your results are outside the normal range, your doctor or nurse will get in touch with you.
Will I need other tests?
You may need other tests like a kidney or heart scan or an electrocardiogram (ECG) depending on the result of your blood test.
What can I do if I am scared of having a blood test?
If you are scared of having Blood Tests in London, you can ask someone to come with you to help distract you during the test or try breathing for relaxation.
If you need a cream to help numb the pain, let your medical practitioner know in advance because some numbing creams need to be applied hours before the blood is collected. Blood tests are a vital component in diagnosing illnesses and monitoring the progress of medication. Call us on 020 71830244 to book an appointment for any blood test.