Lisa is a qualified phlebotomist and provides a professional blood draw and centrifuge service from her private clinic in Henley-on-Thames. She will collect samples as efficiently as possible; verify clients have followed test preparation guidelines; arrange posting or courier collection procedures; and endeavour to produce viable specimens for analysis.
Services range from simple collection of samples with standard holder, butterfly with holder or syringe, and assist with capillary finger prick collections.
Prior to your blood test
Your GP, consultant, nutritionist or other clinician determines a blood test is required, creates a laboratory test form and may order the test pack to be sent to you.
If the test is a private test then the laboratory will send you everything you need for the test along with preparation guidelines.
Before the day: useful preparation tips
Investing in good preparations before coming to me will pay dividends as without these, the test may produce invalid results. Preparations that mighty be necessary include:
- Hydration and food intake – For most tests you are not required to fast but please ensure you are well hydrated for the day of your test. Increase your normal fluid intake the day before and on the day of your blood draw and wear something warm prior to your test. Warm and well hydrated bodies will have more prominent veins for the procedure
- Supplements or prescription medications – Please ask your requesting physician or clinician whether you need to stop any of your supplements or prescription medications prior to your blood draw
- Timing – Book your tests on a Monday to Thursday. Laboratories are not open on a Saturday to receive your posted test
- Fear of needles – 10% of the population share a fear of needles. If you are nervous of having your blood taken then please let me know so that I can allocate more time to you and give you an early appointment. The procedure itself should only take approximately 3 minutes but I understand if you need more time. If you would like some numbing cream prior to your test then please give me prior warning
- Fasting – If you are having a fasting blood test please prepare for the test and please ask for an early appointment. Bring a healthy snack with you to eat after you have had a fasting blood test
- Bleeding disorders – Please let me know prior to your test if you have a bleeding disorder
Some blood tests require special preparation:
- To prepare for a fasting blood test you should have nothing to eat or drink (except water) for 8-12 hours and no alcohol for 24 hours before your test unless told otherwise by your doctor or clinician
- Glucose tolerance tests requires an 8 hour fast before coming to the lab. You will have a blood test when you arrive to provide a baseline measurement. You will then be given a sugar solution to consume followed by a repeat blood test 2 hours later to see whether it is normal
- Serum lipid or cholesterol testing sometimes require a 9-12 hour fast prior to the test. Please check with your doctor whether you need to stop taking any of your medication
- Cortisol blood testing does not normally require a fast but please check with your doctor. You may be requested to refrain from exercise the day before the test and make an appointment for 8-9am on the day of the test as cortisol levels are generally at their peak at this time. Please check with your doctor whether you need to stop taking any of your medication
- Food intolerance tests may require that you have eaten the foods on a regular basis that you are being tested for prior to the test as you may have false negatives
On the day
The following steps make the process go as smoothly as can be:
- Private sample requests would normally contain a requisition form, test preparation instructions, sample collection instructions and equipment. Please bring all the information in your pack as these provide the vital information needed for the test to proceed and produce viable results. The test will not proceed if you don’t have your requisition form
- Mention if you have deviated from the test instructions and we can discuss whether you need to return at a later date
- Mention is you are allergic to latex or latex sensitive as I have latex free gloves and dressings
- Let me know whether you require numbing cream
- The sample is taken (centrifuged if necessary) and prepared for posting or courier collection
- Please have your postal or courier services organised. Henley Royal Mail post office (last post 5.30pm) and a courier drop off point are located 5 minutes from my clinic
After your test
- Apply pressure on the site where your blood was taken from to reduce risk of bruising. Leave your plaster in place to minimise risk of bruising or leakage. If you do bruise then bruising should disappear within a couple of days
- Take a lie down to recover if you need to
- Have your snack if you have been fasting
- Find out the ‘turnaround time’ for your test and then return to your doctor or clinician to discuss your results