Blood Test Information
We use blood tests to help diagnose your illness and monitor your treatment.
What to do when you arrive
Please book in with a receptionist and they will tell you where to sit (we occasionally have to undertake blood tests in different rooms).
It is very helpful if can prepare for the blood test as much as possible e.g. taking of your coat or jacket. This will help the phlebotomist to run to time.
Having blood taken
When you enter the blood room, a member of staff will check your details. One blood test request may require several different small bottles of blood, but these can be taken from a single skin puncture. After the blood has been taken, we cover the puncture with cotton wool. You will need to apply pressure to this for at least three minutes to reduce the risk of bruising. Avoid heavy lifting with that arm for several hours. A small bruise may occur after your test due to blood leaking from the punctured vein and collecting under the skin. This is normal and will go down after a few days in the way any other bruise does.
Please tell us:
- If you have had any problems with blood tests such as feeling faint
- If you take medication that thins your blood such as warfarin or aspirin.
Babies and young children:
We do not have the facility to perform blood tests on children aged 12 and under. Children under 16 should be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Fasting blood tests:
If your doctor asks you to fast before your blood test please do not eat or drink anything except for water for 12 hours before the test.
Glucose tolerance tests:
The blood test needs to be performed exactly 2 hours after consuming the glucose drink. During this time you must not eat or drink or take any vigorous exercise. Please ensure the receptionist is aware that you are here specifically for a GTT – she will document this on the screen and the nurse will try not to keep you waiting.
The phlebotomist is trained to take your blood but not to discuss your blood tests or medical condition.