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How Do I Prepare for My Blood Tests -

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The most important thing that you can do when feeling ill is to see a caring physician. To the physician, a clear picture of a problem that you may have could be revealed by Blood testing, the main tool used to assess medical problems. A Blood test can also help you to learn more about your body and detect potential problems in early stages when treatment or changes in personal habits can be most effective. Our bodies change constantly, and these laboratory Blood tests are helpful tools in evaluating the health of an individual at the time of the test, and trends over years. 

Our position is that testing, when you are not sick, is very important. It establishes a base line of what the 'reference test result range' is for you. This can be the standard starting point from which all interpretation of future tests is done. With this information, you and your physician will know, for certain, what is 'normal' for you.  Coupons for free Blood tests and free Blood test results.

It is important to realize that test results may be outside of the so-called 'reference range' or 'normal range' for many reasons. These variations may be due to such things as the meals eaten or not eaten (fasting) in the 24 hours preceding the test, race, dietetic preference, age, sex, menstrual cycle, degree of physical activity immediately before the test, collection and/or handling of the specimen, non-prescription drugs (aspirin, cold medications, vitamins, etc.), prescription drugs, alcohol intake, the quality of the sleep that you got on the night before the test and a number of non-illness-related factors. Any unusual or abnormal test results should be discussed with your physician, nutritionist, and/or other qualified health care worker.

Most Blood labs establish the reference result statistical range for a particular test so that 95% of healthy patients fall within that reference or 'normal' range. This means that 5% of healthy patients fall outside of the reference range, even when there may be nothing at all wrong with them. Thus an abnormal test does not necessarily mean that there is something wrong with you. Blood test results can mean many different things and are analyzed by doctors in the context of other important factors, such as symptoms (e.g., fever, pain, or diarrhea) and the results of a physical examination. Statistically, if you have 20 or 30 individual tests run as part of a panel, or group of tests, chances are that one or two will be slightly outside the reference range. Part of what you pay your doctor or other medical professional to do is to interpret whether or not these extra-normal test results are significant.

This briefing is intended to help you to better understand the different types of Blood tests most often ordered by doctors and to enable you to ask your doctor informed questions about your lab results in order to better understand your own health.

We recommend that you start to keep copies of all of your lab reports to monitor your own health over time. This will show a 'norm' for you, and establish a personal trend. If you and/or your physician are comparing the results of your Blood tests over time, try to schedule your Blood tests for the same time, every time, and eat the same things, at the same times before the testing.

You will certainly be informed in advance as to exactly what, if anything, and when you should eat before testing. You will also get advice on use of medication before testing. If you are not advised about these things, you must ask. 

Remember, if you have any questions at all about any of your Blood tests, be sure to speak with your physician. Take notes..... the doctor takes a lot of notes! You have a lot of time invested and the tests cost a lot of money.

We also recommend that you note the following information on each test:

The time of day that the tests were taken,
The quality and duration of sleep the night before the tests,
All medications and dosages taken in the 30 days before test day,
How you felt at the time of the tests and,
Content of meals and drinks in the 24-hour period before the test.

Most Blood is drawn for Blood testing in the office of your physician, however, this is not always the case. On the day of the testing we suggest this checklist for a Blood test visits:

Of Special Interest on!
Of Special Interest on! Of Special Interest on!
check-1.gif (151 bytes) Confirm the details of your appointment to have your Blood drawn on the morning of your visit to the place of the test.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Remember to set aside one hour on your schedule for each Blood drawing visit. This will allow enough time for extra waiting time, paperwork, the drawing of your Blood and some recovery time, if necessary.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Take a working pen and a good note pad and USE THEM A LOT.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Note the things that your physician writes down.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Take copies of ALL of the paperwork that you have signed pertaining to your condition (if any) and to the testing.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Take all of your historical notes with you; they may be needed. An important part of this history is your family history. It is not easy to remember every small detail on test day, so a list made in advance is likely to be more complete.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) You must follow the instructions given by your physician pertaining to eating or not eating before testing. Drink at least two or three glasses of fluid in the hours prior to the drawing of your Blood. This will help to keep you from feeling faint during and after the procedure.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Bring a complete list of the medications that you are taking.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) Bring identification and verification of your social security number.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) If you need eyeglasses, be certain to take them with you.

check-1.gif (151 bytes) It is always advisable to have a responsible adult accompany you during your visit to have Blood drawn. You may feel light headed or tired after the process. We call this person a 'Donor Buddy.'

check-1.gif (151 bytes) And, one more time..... take a lot of notes! clear.gif (807 bytes)

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Nothing presented here is intended to be replace the discussion of your test results with your physician or other qualified health professional period-red.gif (63 bytes)

Visit our other Blood test related pages for more information on Blood Testing.

Free Blood test information from the Bloodmobile; CLICK HERE.

Link - Blood Test Kits Link -
Link - Personal Blood Testing Link -
Link - Interpreting Your Blood Tests Link -
Link - Blood Test Reference/Range Chart Link -
Link - Tests Performed on Donated Blood Link -
Link - Blood Testing and Sampling Kits Link -

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   last updated 03/10/2013