Blood Tests

What happens when you have a blood test?

When you have a blood test, the nurse, (or doctor) takes a small sample from a vein in your arm, usually near your elbow. The test is requested by the doctor or nurse in order to monitor your condition, the effects of your medication, or to help in making a diagnosis.

The sample is sent to the hospital for analysis. In most cases we get the result back within 3 working days.

 If there is an important or urgent problem with your test result the doctor will usually telephone you directly: PLEASE CHECK THAT WE HAVE ACCURATE CONTACT DETAILS and your latest mobile number!

If there is a minor but important abnormality in your test, we will telephone or write to you.

If you do have to see the doctor again, please try and see the doctor who requested the test in the first place; it really helps!

When do we do our blood tests?

All our blood tests are undertaken on Monday, Tuesday,  Thursday & Friday  – Before 3pm. This is because the hospital collects the blood samples and takes them to the hospital for analysis every afternoon.

Blood tests do not last until the next day

Who will take your blood?

You blood will usually be take by our full trained Phlebotomist in one of their clinics, they will make you feel comfortable and at ease.

Occasionally it will be taken by another nurse or doctor and the results will go to the hospital in the afternoon as above.

Fasting tests


  • If you have been told to fast for your test, please have no food or drink, except plain water for 14 hours before the test.


  • Please Drink at least 2 glasses of water before coming for your test.


  • You may take any necessary medication, provided it does not need to be taken with food.


  • It may be wise to bring something with you to eat after your test.



Please try not to smoke while fasting as this may affect the result.

These are commonly requested tests
  • FBC,

    Usually a test for anaemia or infection.

  • ESR,

    Both are tests for inflammation in the blood. High readings commonly just mean a recent infection. Very high readings can mean severe arthritis, muscular rheumatism or some other important condition.


  • Blood

    These are usually tests for bruising or if you are on warfarin.

  • B12,

    Low levels of these vitamins can cause Anaemia, nerve problems or memory problems.

  • Ferritin.

    These tests are done to check reasons for anaemia.

  • U+Es,

    Theses are tests of the kidneys, often used to assess blood pressure treatment.

  • LFTs.

    Tests of liver disease, but more usually done to assess whether or not some medicines (such as cholesterol treatments) are affecting the liver.

  • Glucose.

    This is the test for diabetes, and is usually a fasting blood test.

  • TFTs,

    The thyroid glands help to control our energy levels. Low thyroid levels are a common cause of tiredness in the elderly.

  • Amylase

    A test for the pancreas, used to investigate stomach pains.

  • Cholesterol,

    A certain amount of cholesterol (and fat) in the body is essential, but high levels can clog up the arteries. This is an important test, but it is never very urgent.

  • Uric

    This is a test for gout, or to monitor treatment of gout.

  • Rheumatoid

    These tests look for rheumatoid arthritis or other important skin and joint conditions.

  • Proteins

    These are tests of the bone marrow and might be used to investigate any bone pains.

  • Calcium,

    High,or low calcium levels can cause various aches and pains and may be a sign of problems in the bones.

  • PSA

    The test for a healthy prostate.